Using a fireplace or space heater will warm up your home nicely. While they work extremely well, each one comes with risks. Understanding how to mitigate those risks will allow you to use them safely and keep your family warm and toasty all winter long. Some fireplace and space heater safety tips are discussed here. Most of these tasks only take a few minutes to accomplish and will make sure both your fireplace and space heater work as they should.
Have Your Chimney Cleaned
Have your chimney professionally cleaned. With every fire you burn, soot and ash collect inside your chimney. As sparks fly up the chimney, this build-up can cause a chimney fire, and this can cause damage to your roof as well as your chimney. Chimney fires can flare up fast and give you very little time to react.
Make Sure the Flue Is Open to Enable Good Airflow
Always make sure the flue is open. This ensures a good flow of air and will keep smoke from backing up into your home. The flue or damper should remain closed when the fireplace is not in use. This will keep warm air from escaping up the chimney.
The Room Should Always Be Sufficiently Ventilated
Whether you are using a space heater or a fireplace, you need to keep the area well-ventilated. You can crack a window or turn a ceiling fan on low or do anything that will keep the warm air circulating throughout your home.
Well-Seasoned Wood Burns Better
Always use well-seasoned wood in your fireplace. The wood should be completely dry and well-aged. A rule of thumb is to cut this year and burn the next. Wood that is too wet will produce smoke and sizzle, which could cause sparks to fly out of the fireplace and create a fire hazard.
Clean Out the Ashes Once the Fire goes Out
Always clean the ashes out of your fireplace wants the fire goes out. This allows for better airflow and will help the fire burn properly. Too many ashes can also cause your fire to go out prematurely.
Keep Flammable Items Away
Whether you use a fireplace or space heater, it’s essential that you keep any flammable materials away from the fire source. A good rule of thumb is at least 24 inches away. You should also avoid covering the electrical cords or laying them on furniture with space heaters.
Never Leave Them Unattended
Never leave a space heater or fireplace unattended. It only takes a quick second for a small spark to catch onto something flammable, and your home could be ablaze in less than a minute.
If you use either a space heater or a fireplace, you will want to learn a few safety tips to protect your family and home. Call our insurance professionals at Scavone Insurance to find out how you can keep your family safe and warm all winter long. We have a wealth of ideas to help you and your family make the most of all your resources.