Many people use essential oils to relieve stress, treat infections, and helping to fall asleep. But, of course, the fantastic smell is the cherry on top. It is also famous for its health benefits. However, as of writing this article, the medicinal properties of essential oils are still a heated debate.
Other than this, another big concern is, are essential oils flammable?
Yes, the essential oils are flammable in the dryer.
We are here to explain everything you need to know in this article!
Also Read: Check out our other article about What Oils Are Flammable?
Are Essential Oils Flammable in the Dryer?
Essential oils are very flammable substances. While it may seem like a good idea to use them in the dryer to make all the clothes feel and smell nice, it is a definite fire hazard. The flashpoint for some of these oils is as low as 30 degrees Celsius!
This is why you need to be careful putting anything in the dryer that was exposed to essential oils. And in certain conditions, these essential oils may react with the laundry detergent to break down into chemicals that harm the clothes instead. This wastes both the detergent and the essential oil.
According to firefighters and experts, after applying essential oils in clothes, washing it in high temperatures causes the oil to react with detergent and harm the clothes.
But washing in low temperatures keeps the oil from reacting, and when in the dryer, these oils may ignite, causing a house fire.
Can I put essential oils in the dryer?
Despite being quite a flammable substance, many people add essential oils to the dryer. Unfortunately, many do not know about its flammability. In contrast, others think that a few drops of essential oils are not a threat.
That is not the case. Instead, repeating essential oils will result in more oil buildup in clothes that may be enough to cause a fire!
Many people add essential oils with woolen dryer balls or dryer sheets and use them in the washing machine. This is equally as bad as applying essential oils to clothes directly. They can be added at the end of a dryer cycle when the cooling cycle starts; this way, there is no risk of fire.
But it is just better not to put essential oils near the laundry, as there’s always a risk of an accidental case of fire.
Are Fragrance Oils Flammable?
Fragrance oil, a popular alternative to essential oils. They are very cheap compared to essential oils. But this comes at the cost of almost no health benefits. This oil is made synthetically in the lab. It is added with many flammable substances to get the final product, so fragrance oils are flammable.
However, fragrance oils have a higher flashpoint than essential oils, making them a bit safer to use. There are two types of fragrance oils:
- Synthetic fragrance oils
- Natural fragrance oils.
Both of them are flammable. However, when these fragrance oils are mixed with soap, candle wax, etc., going above their flashpoints will not ignite them. This is why fragrance oils are so widely used in the making of such products.
Why does the Flashpoint matter for laundry?
The flashpoint is the lowest temperature of a substance at which it will have enough flammable vapor to ignite when it comes in contact with an ignition source. Therefore, it is essential to know flashpoints of substances that are being used in the laundry.
It is a huge fire hazard when substances like essential oil or fragrance oil whose flashpoint is lower than the temperature at which the dryer operates. Ignitions in the dryer can set the clothes on fire which can spread and cause the entire house or apartment to burn down.
What is the flashpoint of essential oils?
Almost all essential oils have flashpoints. However, the flashpoint of each oil is different from one another, and the range of temperatures among them is too vague to give a clear idea about them. Normally the brands of essential oils state the flashpoints of these oil on their respective websites.
Most essential oil’s flashpoint is below 100 degrees Celsius. This makes them very volatile substances and the reason why they are always stored in glass bottles. Due to very low flashpoints, Essential oils are infamous for being flammable. Therefore, in aromatherapies, they are heated to evaporate, which releases aromas for treatment.
It is always recommended to check out the flashpoint of the specific essential oil you are buying and keep cautionary steps towards handling them.
Also Read: Is Canola Oil Highly Flammable?
Are essential oils flammable in water?
Yes and no. The answer really depends on the property of the essential oil, but usually, the answer is yes. Normally oils (including essential oils) float in water; when the temperature rises or a flammable substance ignites the oil floating above the water, the oil will burn till depleted.
Now, some oils do not float on water and sinks. So when we try to ignite these oils, they do not burn as there is no oxygen gas underwater.
There are some special cases though when essential oils are used in washing machines, they are mixed with other chemicals like detergents. When washing machines are operated in low temperatures with essential oils among the clothes, they do not react with the detergents and may catch fire in the dryer.
However, Suppose the washing machine is operated at high temperatures. In that case, the essential oils react with the laundry detergents and break down. As a result, they are no longer a fire hazard and normally drains out. This may harm the clothes in the washing machine.
Are essential oils flammable in candles?
Using essential oils to make candle wax is a widespread practice and is used as a type of aromatherapy. While essential oils are very flammable substances, mixing them with candle wax does not make it burn.
The mixture of candle wax and essential oils is not flammable. This is why many candles mixed with essential oils can be found for sale online.
Health Concerns of Essential Oils:
Its use for medicinal purposes also gave it a huge boost in fame. However, there is very little evidence that supports the health claims of essential oils.
Essential oils are becoming a trending item as they are easy to use and give out a very pleasant fragrance. However, knowing safety facts like whether it is safe to use in a dryer is wise as it is becoming more popular.
And in many cases, it’s been found that their medicinal effectiveness is exaggerated. However, for minor health issues, the use of these essential oils is harmless.
Hope this article has been helpful, and share it with your friends to let them know whether essential oils are flammable in the dryer!