Your Home: Beware of fire hazards during winter
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Winter is here and Christmas is just two days away. I know what you're thinking: Snow and holiday cheer, right? While that's true, and I'm trying not to be a downer here, as a homeowner, you should also be thinking about fire hazards and safety. Most experts will tell you that the heating season is prime time for accidental fires. No better time for a few safety and prevention reminders.
“We like to talk to our customers about awareness. So if you're going to buy a heater, be aware of where you're putting it. Don't put it near something that can fall on top of it that's combustible,” said Brett Murray, Home Depot Operations Manager.
We usually tell you to replace the batteries in your smoke detectors during daylight saving time, but Christmas/New Year's serves as a great reminder as well.
Murray said, “Even hard wired smoke detectors have a battery backup in them. Most people don't realize, so that needs to be replaced yearly. It's the last thing you need to fail on you.”
Whether you're running a small space heater, pellet or wood burning stove, make sure you've established a safe zone around it and that you're keeping those combustible items away, especially a Christmas tree.
“It pays to be paranoid. Take a step back and look at what you have going on,” Murray said. “Where I burn wood I have a gated off area. I have small children, so there's nothing within five to 10 feet of my fireplace whatsoever.”
It's also recommended that you have your heating system, no matter what it is, professionally inspected and cleaned once a year to ensure it is operating properly.