No matter when a house fire strikes, they can be dangerous, but when the winter temperatures drop, and you use alternative means to heat your house, the chance of your home becoming a statistic for a house fires increases. Almost 1,200 people die in a winter fire in their home every year, and while those statistics are scary, you can keep your home safe by following these simple steps.
1. Extending Furnace Life
One of the most important things you can do for your furnace is to have a yearly maintenance program. The program should include cleaning the air filters, moving items away from the furnace, dusting the motor assembly off, checking for faulty wiring or broken parts, and locating possible worn bearings. The seasonal furnace maintenance should also include a professional check of the thermostat to make sure it is working correctly and won’t cause the furnace to work too often or not often enough.
2. Working Smoke Alarms
Even if your home has a fireplace that lets off too much smoke, you want to be forewarned. Smoke alarms can do that and more if you keep fresh batteries inside the unit and test them once a month. Although many people ignore the alarms and believe they will last for many years, the truth is a fire alarm’s standard life is much like any other electronic item – you can look to about a 10-year lifespan. By checking the unit to make sure it emits a horrifying loud sound, you are ensuring that your family will be notified if a fire breaks out inside your house.
3. Unattended Lit Candles
Candles are romantic, leave soft shadows on the walls, and can be extremely dangerous. If you love candles, make sure you keep them away from curtains, furniture, and any other combustible or flammable items in your home. Children and pets can also harm themselves or start a fire if they get too close to lit candles. To be safe, use flameless candles whenever possible, and if you have to use a fire-lit candle, put the flame out whenever you leave the room.
4. Cleared Space Heaters
Many individuals use space heaters to warm the room they are in when they don’t want to heat the entire house – especially the elderly that often require the extra warmth. Space heaters have been reported to cause over 12,000 house fires a year, and many have resulted in death. To keep your home safe, make sure your space heater is at least three feet away from anything flammable, and when you leave the room, turn the unit off. The same is true for when you go to bed – turn it off.
Your home can stay fire-free during the winter if you follow these tips. You don’t have to become a home-fire statistic if you are careful about furnace maintenance, have working smoke alarms, buy flameless candles, and turn your space heaters off. That isn’t too much to ask of yourself to ensure your family’s safety – is it?
Article Submitted By Community Writer