To many people, winter is the most wonderful time of the year. However, winter is also the most dangerous times of the year for home fires, as half of all home heating fires occur in December, January, and February. Before you turn up the heat to stay cozy and warm, read over our list of essential winter fire safety tips to keep you and your home safe this winter.
Heating is the second leading cause of all U.S. home fires, and space heaters are the type of equipment most involved in these fires. Space heaters and other heat-producing appliances should never be left on or plugged in when no one is home, and only one appliance should be plugged into an electrical outlet at a time. Keep anything that can be burned at least three feet away from all heat sources, including fireplaces, wood stoves, radiators, as well as space heaters.
Carbon monoxide is called “the invisible killer” for a good reason, as the odorless and colorless gas is extremely hazardous and more common in the winter than any other time of year. The poisonous gas is created when fuels like gasoline, wood, coal, or propane do not burn. Heating and cooking equipment can be potential sources of carbon monoxide, and every home should take the necessary precautions against the invisible gas. Be sure to have a carbon monoxide detector in your home and test the alarm at least once a month- and of course, have fire alarms throughout your home and test those often as well.
While generators are useful during power outages caused by winter storms, improper use of them can be very dangerous. Portable generators can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning, electrical shock, or a fire hazard if misused. Your portable generator should be kept outside- as far away from your home as possible- and away from any windows, doors, and vent opening. Also, turn off the generator and let it cool down before refueling- never refuel while it is running.
Chimneys And Vents
A qualified professional should be cleaning and inspecting your chimney and vents every year before you start lighting your fireplace. Be sure to use dry, seasoned wood when lighting your fire to produce more flame and less smoke. Also, store your cooled ashes in a tightly covered metal container, placed outside at least ten feet from your home and neighboring buildings.
Fire Prevention and Protection Services from Fireline
Whether you need smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, or an automatic sprinkler system installed at your rental property, Fireline has you covered. We have been protecting people and properties from fire damage since 1947—and our experience shows in our excellent work! We are known for our wonderful customer service, our expertise, and our reliability. For more information on how we can help your residential or commercial property, visit us online or give us a call at (800) 553-3405. For more fire safety tips, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.