One of the common causes of house fires is improper usage of heating elements like fireplaces, furnaces or portable heaters. During the winter, our main focus is to keep our homes warm and comfortable. Consequentially, smart home safety practices can often be overlooked.
Don’t let the cold weather cloud your judgement! Take a look at our list of home heating Do’s and Don’ts for a safe, warm, and happy household.
Do create a safety circle around any heat source
A safety circle is a three-foot perimeter around any heating element, including portable heaters and fireplaces. Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from the heating element. This includes paper, furniture, clothing, and bedding. The safety circle also acts as a kid and pet-free zone to help prevent accidental burns.
Don’t use your oven to heat your home
You should never attempt to heat your home with your oven. Not only is it inefficient, it’s unsafe. An unmonitored oven leaves a greater risk for fires. Trying to heat your home with a gas oven can even put you and your family at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Do use a safety screen in front of your fireplace
If you have an open fireplace without closable doors, it’s important to use a safety screen. Screens can prevent sparks from flying into your home and catch any rolling logs.
Don’t leave portable heating equipment unattended
Make sure any portable space heaters are turned off whenever you leave the room and when you go to bed at night. When using a space heater, make sure it’s placed on a level, non-flammable surface and keep children or pets at a safe distance. When shopping for portable heaters, consider models with auto-shut off features for an added safety measure.
Do use the correct fuel for portable heaters
If your portable heater uses fuel, make sure you’re using the right kind of fuel. The correct fuel will always be specified by the manufacturer.
Don’t forget to test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
It’s not a bad idea to test your detectors at least once a month during the winter, especially if you’re utilizing a fireplace. While your furnace, fireplaces, and portable heaters are hard at work, there is a greater risk of an accidental fire.
Do schedule a furnace and fireplace tune-up with Columbia Heating and Cooling
While we recommend scheduling your tune-ups before the cold weather hits, it’s never too late to have us come out and make sure your equipment is working properly.
Schedule your furnace tune-up right now and save an additional $10 off the total cost. You can combine any two tune-ups (furnace or air conditioner) to claim this offer. Give us a call and schedule before December 31st to get started!