As colder weather approaches, it’s a good time to think about home heating safety. According to the National Fire Prevention Association, heating equipment was involved in about 58,900 reported home structure fires in the U.S. in 2009. That’s about 18 percent of all reported home fires for that year.
No matter whether you’re relying on a furnace, fireplace, central heating device, wood stove, space heater, radiator, or other heating equipment to keep your home warm this winter, take the time to clean and inspect your heating equipment prior to using it this season. Failure to clean was the top contributing factor to ignition in home heating equipment fires reported in the NFPA’s report.
If you have a fireplace or woodstove in your home, the NFPA recommends having your chimney swept at least once a year at the beginning of cold weather in order to remove soot and other debris. You can find a certified chimney sweep through the Chimney Safety Institute of America. In addition to cleaning your chimney, a chimney sweep can inspect the chimney structure and liner for any cracks or deterioration.
Home Heating Safety Tips
- Get your heating equipment and chimneys inspected and cleaned each year by a qualified professional.
- Turn portable heaters off when the room is unoccupied.
- Always use manufacturer-specified fuel for fuel burning space heaters.
- Hire a qualified professional to install any stationary heating equipment, central heating equipment, or water heaters.
- Do not use your oven as a source to heat your home.
- Keep at least three feet clear around any heating equipment in your home.
- Install a screen on your fireplace to prevent sparks from entering the room.
Home fires are a very real danger, but so is carbon monoxide poisoning. Install carbon monoxide detectors and test them regularly to keep your home safe this winter.
If you or a loved one has been injured, contact the experts at Schuerman Law today. Schuerman Law has been working with personal injury claims for over 40 years. John Schuerman will compassionately advocate for injured individuals as well as their families while fighting for full compensation of their claims. Schuerman Law offers evening and weekend appointments in addition to home and hospital visits. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 1-800-274-0045.