The holidays should be a time of festive celebration with your family and friends. Unfortunately, it’s the most common time of the year for house fires. Inadequate maintenance and improper use of heating equipment is a leading causes of fire in the home, so please follow our tips for heating safety this season.
Keep anything that could catch fire or burn at least 3-feet away from all heating equipment and open flames. This includes furnaces, heat ducts and radiators, space heaters, candles, and stoves.
Always turn off supplemental heating equipment, like portable space heaters, before going to bed or leaving your home. Never leave space heaters unattended, especially if there are children or pets around.
NEVER use your oven to heat your home.
Always blow out candles when not in the room. Never leave candles unattended, especially if there are children or pets around.
Never hang clothing, hats and mittens, or any other fabric over heating equipment or lamps.
Before using your holiday decorations, always inspect the cords for damage and corrosion. If there are loose connections, exposed wires, fraying, or any other damage, don’t use them!
Always plug space heaters directly into the outlet, never use extension cords.
Don’t overload electrical circuits. Typically, only 3 sets of lights should be strung together. Check your manufacturer instructions carefully to be sure you are operating lights and decorations properly.
Heating system repairs should ALWAYS be made by a professional.
If you smell gas, turn off the gas at the main valve immediately. Do not turn lights on or off, or ignite anything. Call your local gas company immediately from a separate location.
Never store flammable products such as fuel, gasoline, paint thinners, or cleaning products near any heat sources.
Never use your grill, generator or any other fuel-burning equipment or appliance indoors, even in the garage with the door open. You risk deadly carbon monoxide poisoning!
Test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors/alarms every 30 days. Replace them immediately if necessary, they save lives!
Make sure your fireplace or wood stove has a sturdy door and/or screen to keep sparks and embers from dropping into the room.
Make sure there is plenty of ventilation. You could be at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning if there is not adequate air circulation.
If your heater has a pilot light, make sure it is functioning properly. If you have to keep relighting it, have it serviced by a professional before using it.
If you smell gas or any other fumes, feel dizzy, or notice a yellow or flickering pilot light, turn off the heater immediately. Do not use it again until a professional has inspected it.
If you haven’t had your chimney professionally inspected and cleaned, or had your annual heating maintenance in the last 12 months – NOW is the time to do it!