Did you know, more home fires occur during the holiday season and winter months than any other time of the year? In the Brunswick area and near the coast, the weather for this time of year is anything but predictable. Many of us continuously adjust our thermostats depending on the weather, and sometimes it’s difficult to know what the next day or week will bring.
One thing we do know is that all of us are going to need our heating system or fireplaces at some point soon, if we’re not already using them. It is important to be aware of any safety concerns that may occur when it comes to keeping your home warm. Follow these tips for heating your home safely so you can enjoy the holiday season without worries.
Some days, all we can think about is getting home and snuggling up in front of the fireplace. Fireplaces are so common that it’s easy to assume we know what we’re doing. However, there may be certain things you don’t know about fireplaces. Read through these safety practices regarding fireplaces:
First and foremost, open the damper and make sure the smoke is going up the chimney, and not in your house. Always use the fireplace tools to handle anything in the fireplace. They are there for a reason. Keep the screen closed, and if you don’t have one, get one before ever using the fireplace. If you don’t want a screen, a nonflammable rug or hard surface in front of the fireplace should help. Do not leave the fire unattended. It never hurts to hear that one again! Lastly, when cleaning old ashes out, keep the damper open and place them in a steel container. Follow those steps and you’ll be having safe, cozy nights by the fireplace for years to come.
The misuse of wood burning stoves has led to an alarming number of fires across the US over the past few years. Many people are drawn to wood burning stoves because of their unique look but don’t understand the dangers that come with using them. If you have, or are planning to get a wood burning stove, read through these safety tips:
First and foremost, there must be 36 inches of clearance from any walls, ceilings, floors, furniture, or anything combustible. The base of the stove should be on a 36+ inch, noncombustible surface. There are many articles that discuss the best types of wood to burn in your stove, but the best thing is just to make sure the wood is dry throughout. There should be some type of ventilation for your wood stove, and if there’s not then don’t burn it. These types of stoves are highly unsafe and not recommended for use in your home. Lastly, just like the fireplace, ashes should be properly handled and disposed of using a steel container. Wood burning stoves are beautiful, but it’s imperative you know how to properly use one, before putting it in action.
Many of us often use space heaters to keep warm on colder days, so it’s important that we know how to properly use them. First and foremost, if you’re using a gas or oil burning space heater, make sure it is outdoors. These space heaters need a well-ventilated environment since they produce dangerous combustion gasses that replace oxygen, creating a very unsafe environment when indoors.
Using an electric space heater inside is not a problem as long as certain safety precautions are followed. Keep objects at least 3 feet away from the heater, including yourself. Your skin can burn just as easily as furniture, so keeping a safe distance from the heater will lower the risk of bodily injury or fires. Do not use an extension cord to plug in your space heater and be sure to turn it off and unplug it when it’s not being used. Don’t use space heaters in damp areas or on counter tops unless they’re specifically made for that purpose. Lastly, make sure your space heater has been tested for safety by a nationally recognized testing laboratory to ensure top safety from the get-go.
If there are any other appliances you use to heat your home, and you have questions about them, give us a call at 912-264-2159. We will be happy to help you with heating your home safely!
For more than 40 years, Beckham Heating & Air has served Brunswick, GA and the surrounding area with honest, courteous service at a fair price. Feel free to contact us by phone or via email. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram!