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Oct 24, 2008 11:46 AM

Is it safe to leave your crockpot on all day while you are out?

Just wondering if everyone leaves their crockpot on all day while not home. Maybe it's a dumb question, but every so often I come across someone who thinks it's not a good idea due to fire hazard. I leave mine on 8 hours while I am at work. My mom did this too. I thought that is what they are designed for. Has anyone ever had a problem???

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  1. yes it should be safe. Heck I leave my oven on sometimes (albeit not for 8 hours) if it's set low enough and I'm doing a slow braise in a dutch oven.

    1. I always do it. Never a problem, not even a worry.

      1. I've left it on many times. Just to be on the safe side, I don't leave towels or pot holders on the lid and I move it away from the wall. Haven't had any problem yet.

        1. That is what they are designed for. Who has time for slow cooked recipe when they're not home? Keep it out of reach of something that might fall on it or pets or what have you.

          1. It is never "safe" to leave any appliance on when there isn't someone there to monitor what's going on. Electrical fires, including those caused by Crock pots, can occur even when you're at home watching the pot. That said, I sometimes leave my crock pot on while I'm away from home. I've been fortunate, never having had to come home to a firefighters convention in my front yard. But I realize that, when I make that decision, I'm taking a risk.

            4 Replies
            1. re: todao

              Does it mean you turn off your hot water heater or furnace off when you leave home, too?

              1. re: al b. darned

                Copied from the Sonoita-Elgin Fire Department News :

                "Fire Safety Tip: Can you even imagine how many causes of fire there are? Many we know and many we don’t. We recently had a structure fire started by a crock pot. Check yours out! Set it on your counter and turn it on HIGH for about ½ hour. BE CAREFUL and watch it to make sure everything is OK. Now turn it OFF. Feel your counter. Is it VERY hot? You bet it is! If the counter is hot, find another non-flammable place to put the crock pot (like on a tile or pizza stone). Or safer yet, don’t leave the crock pot unattended."

                I think it's fairly obvious that no one's home is ever going be perfectly safe from the threat of a fire. But in my view, I'd rather not add one more possible layer of risk. I'm not going to shut off my furnace when I leave my house, but I don't consider it a necessity to run a crock pot when I'm not home and personally, I would never do it.

                1. re: flourgirl

                  i put my slow-cooker on a sheet pan when it's on the counter of my old Hut. now my counters are granite, not much of a fire hazard there.
                  i've also put it on my stove top.
                  also make sure that it's nopt directly under any upper cabinets, growing up we had two kitchen fires from hot appliances under cabinets.

                  1. re: flourgirl

                    It should not be left on high all day. Low is a different thing.