With the recent Polar Vortex over, we are back to our normal winter temperatures. Homeowners in our area are still burning fires to bring heat and ambiance into the home, and it’s important to maintain a certain level of safety throughout the rest of winter. Spring is a time when many people become more relax about fire safety, but the importance of home safety while using fire products should always be in the front of your mind.
Fire Burning Habits
You should always remember to only burn properly seasoned firewood in your fireplace, insert, or stove. This keeps the fire burning cleanly and the chimney working efficiently. Never burn items such as clothes, trash, or leaves. These items burn incompletely and can rise up the flue ignited, which could lead to a potential flue fire. You should never use fuel in your system that is not produced specifically for use in your specific system. Using gas or lighter fluid can create high temperatures, staining or damaging your fireplace and leading to house fires.
Use Fireplace Tools & Install Safety Devices
There are specific tools designed for fireplace use including a brush, shovel, and poker. These tools should have long, durable handles, and they are best used with leather gloves to prevent burns to your hands and forearms.
For optimum safety, you need to install smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors – on each level of your home. You can choose battery operated detectors that need to be changed regularly or purchase one that has an internal battery which lasts the life of the device. No matter what kind of device you install in your home, you should check each of them monthly and replace as when needed.
Plan an Escape & Clear Out Fire Hazards
Make an escape plan with your family and practice it monthly. You should make sure to plan two ways out. First, draw a diagram of your home including windows and doors, each floor, and each room. Practice a fire escape every month with adults and children in the home and even guests.
Clutter in the home can lead to fire hazards. Crowding of clothes, papers, outlets, chemicals, and other hazards can lead to a house fire. Walk the home on a regular basis, clear away clutter and address crowded electrical outlets. This is a problem at computer desks and entertainment centers.
Schedule Professional Services
Your fireplace that is not the only danger. It’s important to have home repairs completed by certified professionals. Your clothes dryer vent, furnace, air conditioning unit, and chimney all need professional services on a regular basis to work properly. It’s important to schedule inspections once problems occur. When your fireplace is less efficient or clothes dryer stops drying one load in one cycle, you need to call the professionals to avoid possible fire.
At Trinity Chimney Service, we bring over 30 years of experience in the fire and chimney industry to Central Maryland. We inspect and clean chimneys year-round, and our first priority is your comfort and safety. Call Trinity at 443-602-4306 or request an appointment online.