Well, we’re officially in the fall season! This is such a great time of year for apple picking, pumpkin carving, and spending times with friends and family. This is also when the weather starts to get a bit chilly and we start to turn off our air conditioners and turn on our heat. Whether the source of your heat is a furnace, space heater, or a wood-burning stove, where there is heat, there is a chance of fire. With help from the National Fire Prevention Association, we’ve put together some safety tips when using this equipment.

Use the three-foot rule
Establish a three-foot rule in your home where kids and pets are not allowed within three feet of the heat source. Be sure to educate your kids and family members on fire safety and explain why keeping away from the source is so important. The same is true for other objects in your home and furnishings. If these objects are too close, they could catch fire.

Test your smoke alarms
This is something you should be doing year-round, but it’s especially important to test them when your heat is on. Smoke alarms have been proven to save lives and will alert you and your family to evacuate your home in case of a fire. Smoke alarms should be tested at least once a month and be sure to change batteries accordingly. As we mentioned, any source of heat comes with a chance for fire, so making sure your home is prepared and ready is crucial.

Install a CO detector
Similarly to the smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors should be installed and tested in your home year-round. However, when you’re using any equipment that burns fuel, there is a chance for carbon monoxide poisoning if the area around the equipment is not properly ventilated. Install these detectors wherever you have your smoke alarms, and test them frequently.

Operate your heat source properly
Regardless of the source of heat, safety is always the top priority. Each source of heat has its own fire risks, so operating your heat source properly will keep your family safe and keep home fires at bay. Have heating equipment installed and inspected by a qualified professional, use the right kind of fuel specified by the manufacturer, practice fireplace safety, and keep all fuel-burning equipment near windows or open doors to ensure there’s enough ventilation.

It’s also important to note that your oven or stove should never be utilized as a heat source!

Even if you practice these safety tips, sometimes a fire can’t be prevented. If you find yourself in a situation with fire or smoke damage in your home, give us a call. Our technicians are certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification and are ready to get your home back to feeling like paradise.