During wintertime cold spells, when you’re running the furnace or space heater to keep your home toasty warm, fire prevention should be a primary concern. Why? Because according to the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA), heating equipment is a common cause of fires in American homes. Fortunately, you can reduce the risk of accidental fires in your home this heating season by taking these safety-wise steps:
Keep Your Heating Equipment Well-Maintained
Call in a reputable HVAC pro to inspect and clean your gas furnace before heating season begins. When the equipment is professionally maintained, you’ll have peace of mind that all the key components – like the heat exchanger, vent, wiring and system controls – are in good repair and working properly and safely.
Use Your Space Heater Wisely
If you plan to use a space heater to take the chill off a single room or area of your home, make sure it’s equipped with an automatic shutoff in case the unit accidentally tips over onto the carpeting, wood floor, or other flammable surface. Always place the heater on a level, non-flammable surface, and plug your electric unit into a ground fault interrupter (GFI) outlet. Additionally, only use a space heater in a room that’s occupied.
Exercise Caution With Flammable Materials
Don’t store flammables like paint, solvents, aerosols or paper products near any combustion appliance, like the furnace, water heater or clothes dryer. To avert an accidental fire, always allow at least a three-foot clearance between a fireplace, portable space heater or any such device and upholstered furniture, curtains, bedding, throw rugs and any other potentially-flammable household items.
Have Well-Functioning Smoke Detectors
To warn you if a fire does break out during heating season, you should have smoke detectors installed in each bedroom, adjacent to the sleeping areas, and on each level of your home. To ensure that they’re functioning properly, replace the batteries in each device before heating season, and test all your detectors once a month.
To schedule a heating system inspection to help with fire prevention in your Yuma home, contact us at Hansberger Refrigeration and Electric Company.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Yuma, Arizona about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 928-723-3183.