Fire is one of the most common causes of death and extensive property damage, but thankfully, there are a number of ways to reduce the fire risk of a building. It’s important to take time to look at how to make your house as safe as possible so you can protect it and everyone inside of it.
1) Install a Smoke Detector Outside Every Sleeping Area
Smoke detectors are designed to detect smoke and fire at their earliest stage, giving you more time to escape. However, smoke detectors can only do their job near a sleeping area. Installing a smoke detector outside every sleeping area lets a fire escape its first stages, giving you an early warning of the problem.
2) Install Smoke Detectors in High-Risk Areas
Smoke detectors need to be located in high-risk areas of the house. If your house is equipped with an alarm system, the alarm system should be used as a backup to your smoke detector or as a precautionary measure for fires that may not set off your smoke detector.
3) Regularly Test Your Smoke Detectors
Not only should you have smoke detectors in the house, but you should also test them regularly. Even though it may seem inconvenient, the price you pay for not testing your smoke detectors can be your life or someone else’s. You should test all smoke detectors monthly to ensure that they function correctly. If a detector is malfunctioning, replace it immediately to ensure the safety of your home and family.
4) Have Dryer Vents Professionally Inspected and Cleaned Annually
Dryer vents are the most common way of starting a fire in the home so it’s important to regularly clean your dryer vents. The lint that goes up the dryer vent should be cleaned out once per year, usually around spring cleaning time. However, some companies will inspect your dryer vent regularly if you wish to pay for their service. It can prevent some of the problems with dryer vents, such as lint fires.
5) Have Chimneys Checked Out and Repaired Annually
If you have a chimney in your house, make sure it is checked out and repaired at least once a year. Chimneys need to be cleaned entirely of creosote buildup and calcifications over a year. You may also want to have an expert inspect your chimney before you start burning wood in your fireplace this winter.
6) Make Sure Fireplace Chimneys Are Clean and Dry
If you have a fireplace in your house, make sure that your chimney is clean and dry before you start the fire. Water or dampness can cause the walls of a chimney to crack or collapse, which will put your family at risk of serious injury. Professional cleaning companies are usually willing to inspect chimneys yearly to ensure they are adequately cleaned and dried.
Although it is not always possible to completely prevent fires in your home, these six tips can help. Rearranging your furniture around television and putting up fire-rated curtains are simple changes you can make that can prevent fires from occurring. If a fire occurs in your home, consult with the fire department or call on one of the skilled professionals you find to help with your fire-related issues.