Fire Place Safety Tips | Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration
There’s nothing quite like having your own fireplace to enjoy during the winter season. Who doesn’t like cozying up to the heat of a small, crackling fire? However, if you have a fireplace, you need to be aware of the risk of fire and smoke damage. The following are a few fireplace safety tips that you should be sure to follow to help prevent potential fire & smoke damage:
- Have your chimney cleaned– Before you begin using your fireplace, it’s a good idea to have your chimney inspected. This is especially true if it’s been a long time since it’s been used. All kinds of debris may have built up in your chimney, from soot to branches and even bird nests. Debris in your chimney can block the safe exit of smoke, thereby forcing it back into your house.
- Make sure your damper is open – Before you build a fire, double check to make sure the damper is open or you’ll quickly find your home filling up with smoke. Additionally, once you put your fire out, wait until the embers die down before closing the damper again.
- Only use dry wood – Wet wood will cause more smoke and soot buildup, so make sure that you only use dry, well-aged wood, which will burn more evenly. Avoid burning anything else other than wood. Other materials could produce large sparks and/or could catch fire quickly, posing a potential burn risk.
- Build your fire slowly – Don’t pile up all of your wood into the fire at once. Build it up slowly and steadily to help prevent the fire from growing too big too quickly, and to reduce your risk of any fire & smoke damage.
- Clear the space around the fireplace – You should avoid keeping anything flammable near your fireplace. This includes any rugs, furniture, or drapes. If you’re planning on setting up a holiday tree, do so away from the fireplace. Even a small spark that jumps out could ignite something that’s flammable if it’s too close to the fire.
- Put a guard screen up – Once your fire gets going, put up a guard screen. This will help keep children and pets from getting too close to the open flames and will also help prevent potential sparks from shooting out from your fire.
- Never leave a fire unattended – If you build a fire in your fireplace, make sure that there is an adult in the room at all times. Not only can an adult keep an eye on the fire, but they can keep an eye on any children or pets in the vicinity of the fireplace.
- Inform your children – Give your children a safety lesson about your fireplace. Tell them not to get too close and to let an adult know right away if they find any fireplace tools or accessories within reach, such as matches.
- Install smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors – Test your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors every year. You should also install fresh batteries before the winter season. These devices can be the difference between life and death when it comes to warning you that a fire has broken out.
- Have a fire extinguisher on hand – You shouldn’t need a fire extinguisher if you follow all of the previously mentioned fire safety tips, but you should have one just in case.
Use these fireplace safety tips to help prevent potential fire & smoke damage. If you need professional fire and smoke damage restoration services, be sure to contact us at Courtesy Care today.