During the next few months, we take refuge from the bitter cold in our homes. According to the US Fire Administration, fires account for more than 3,500 deaths and 18,300 injuries in America every year. Many of these fires occur in homes. There are ways to reduce the risk of fire in your home. Planning and prevention is important for all households.
First Step of Prevention
The first step of preventing home fires is to install smoke alarms on every floor of your home. Smoke alarms greatly increase your chances of escaping a fire. Test and replace batteries regularly to make sure they work effectively. The next step is to create a fire escape plan and share and practice it with your whole household. Make sure this plan details how to get out of each room and purchase collapsible ladders for escape from windows.
Electrical and Appliance Safety
To prevent electrical fires, purchase electrical products that are evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory. Using extension cords wisely means that they are never overloaded and not placed in high traffic areas or under rugs. Replace any frayed wires immediately to avoid fires. Follow the manufacturer’s safety precautions when using any appliance. If you notice an appliance sparking, smelling strange, or overheating, immediately turn it off and have it repaired by a professional or replaced. When not using an appliance, unplug it.
Portable Space Heater Safety
Portable space heaters can help keep you warm and save money, but you need to use them carefully. Only buy heaters that are evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL). Make sure the heater will switch off if it falls over, keep it at least three feet away from curtains, bedding, furniture, paper, and other materials. Always keep the heater on a hard and level surface.
Inspect your fireplace once a year to make sure it is in good condition. Use a fireplace screen that covers the entire opening to catch flying sparks. Never go to bed or leave the house if the fire is not completely out. Most importantly, be aware of your fireplace use and be careful in each step.
To avoid fires when cooking, wear short, close fitting sleeves and stay in the kitchen. If you leave the kitchen while using the stove, turn it off until you return. Keep children at least three feet away from the stove.
At All-Star Heating, Cooling and Plumbing we care about you and your family. Please follow these fire prevention tips. If you have any concerns about your heating system, please call us to schedule an inspection so we can make sure your home is safe and your system is in working order.