It is that time of year once the weather melts and temperatures in most nations drop. If you enjoy the occasional cozy fire on your wood-burning fireplace, remember that heating equipment is among the leading causes of house fires during the winter months. Furthermore, as stated by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), more than a third of home heating fires in the U.S. involve fireplaces and chimneys. Here are a few critical fireplace safety tips that could help prevent a cloud of smoke or fire-related injury in your house during these cold months.
Fireplace Safety Tips
- Before the heating system, be sure to hire a professional chimney sweep to inspect and remove creosote or other obstacles, for example, animal planters, by the chimney.
- Permit only a qualified professional to install chimney connectors and chimneys in your house.
- Inspect your chimney cap regularly. If it’s damaged, repair or replace it. If your chimney doesn’t have a cap at the top, have one installed fitted using wire-mesh sides to prevent debris or animals from getting into the chimney.
- Keep all flammable objects, like newspapers, books, holiday decorations, and furniture, at least two feet from the fireplace.
- Be certain there’s a fire extinguisher in the room.
- Use only dry, seasoned wood, cut to the correct length.
- Have a mesh metal screen or glass fireplace doors installed to prevent embers from shooting from the fireplace. Learn more about fire prevention here.
- Use fireplace tools to maintain the fire.
- Supervise children whenever the fireplace is being used. Remind them to stay away from the fire.
- Keep pets at a safe distance from the flame, too.
- Always oversee the fire and never leave it burning when going to sleep or leaving the house.
- Close the damper only once the embers have cooled off.
- Install and maintain smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms (CO) outside every sleeping area and on every level of the house. For the best protection, interconnect the CO alerts, so that when one sounds, they do.
When starting a flame:
- Eliminate the ashes from the previous fire but let them cool for several hours before disposing of them. Constructing a flame in addition to the ash will result in more smoke, as it reduces the air supply to timber.
- Put the ashes into a metal container with a tight lid. Store it out, at least 10 feet away in the house and other buildings. Don’t dump ashes in wooded areas or on yards, at least till they have completely cooled.
- Open the damper; you may need to look up into the chimney with a mirror or flashlight to check that it is open.
- Place crumpled newspaper onto the grate and cover it using kindling or a different fire-starter (but don’t use caustic liquids to begin your fire!) Add the firewood once the kindling is burning brightly. After that, close the fire screen.
- Don’t overload the fireplace; a large fire creates more smoke and can harm your chimney.
- Never burn plastic, garbage, or other materials that might be hazardous.
For skilled fire damage cleaning solutions, contact the PuroClean experts!
Even with the proper fireplace safety measures in place, accidents may still happen. As smoke may seriously damage a home, it’s essential to get the home remediated as soon as possible. The more soot and smoke sit on a surfacer, the more damage it can do. Our fire damage restoration technicians use the most recent equipment and methods to remove soot and deodorize your home after fire harm, fast and correctly. For professional fire damage cleaning solutions and water damage restoration, contact your regional PuroClean office. Check out Woodinville restoration services for more information.