Winter Weather Brings Unique Fire Hazards
For better or worse, homeowners rely on special appliances when the weather turns icy. We understand how important it is to say warm and cozy all winter. However, overheating your home or setting up a portable space heater during cold weather can exponentially increase fire hazards. Winter storms, holiday decorations, Christmas candles, and fireplaces are other common causes of winter fires.
At ServiceMaster by Cornerstone, our goal is to help the greater Cordova community prevent nightmarish fire scenarios before they transpire in the first place. Winter should be spent celebrating the holidays – not rummaging through soot and ash. That’s why we’re going to outline severe threats and offer inside tips on how to improve fire safety. We want nothing more than for every homeowner to enjoy the peace of mind of spending the winter months with family in a warm and safe environment.
By Mindful of the Dangers of Space Heaters
Space heaters are a popular appliance to help keep rooms toasty during freezing weather. Unfortunately, many people don’t know how dangerous space heaters can be when it comes to causing property fires. Every year, over 25,000 homes catch fire, and 300 deaths occur due to space heaters.
As a result, we recommend that you avoid using a space heater in your home. At the very least, follow these precautions to reduce the chances of a winter house fire:
- Place your space heater at least three feet away from any furniture or objects
- Don’t leave your space heater on overnight
- Keep your space heater at a reasonable temperature
- Purchase a space heater with tip-over, over-heat protection, and safety standard certifications
These proactive measures can help you significantly reduce the risk of a residential fire and subsequent damage.
Use Your Fireplace Responsibly
Another common culprit of winter fires is indoor fireplace misuse. It is wise to be mindful of fire hazards when using your fireplace – regardless of whether you have a wood, pellet, or gas-burning stove.
Here are some safety tips that can help you avoid a winter home fire:
- Never leave a fire unattended! Always ensure your fire is completely extinguished – embers and all before heading out to town or going to bed!
- Never toss cardboard, wrapping paper, pinecones, or tree branches into your fireplace. The smoke and residue are unhealthy and pose serious fire risks. They can also create a smoke hazard by lining your chimney.
- Have a pro inspect, clean, and maintain your chimney before the winter season arrives. Clearing debris, blockages, and birds’ nests can help prevent smoke obstruction and fire hazards.
- Only use seasoned firewood. Damp or green wood can pop, sizzle, and crackle – launching small embers into your home.
Inspect & Clean Your Dryer Vents
One way to prevent a winter house fire is regularly clean your dryer vents. In all honesty, this tip should be considered all year long. Dryer fires are a leading cause of residential fires. On the positive side, they are also preventable with regular cleaning and maintenance.
Here are some easy steps you can take to reduce the risk of a house fire and increase the efficiency of your dryer:
- Hire a pro to remove the lint accumulated in your clothes dryer
- Empty the lint trap after every single load
- Always check to ensure your duct connections are secure and free of gaps or holes
- Clean out the dryer vent regularly
- Follow manufacturer guidelines and instructions
Inspect & Upgrade Your Wiring & Electronic Systems
Another common cause of winter fires is defective wiring. Faulty wiring can cause fires all year long but can be especially problematic in winter when stuck indoors and relying on many appliances to stay warm and toasty.
You can reduce the chances of a fire caused by damaged and compromised electrical systems, outlets, and wiring by:
- Invest in a surge protector to protect your devices from a power surge
- Inspect electrical cords, outlets, and plugs for signs of damage or fraying
- Hiring an electrician to perform regular electrical maintenance.
- Keeping tabs on your electrical system’s capacity to avoid overloading your circuits
Dealing with Fire Damage? Call ServiceMaster by Cornerstone Without Delay
We hope these tips will help you improve your fire safety and prevention. Don’t hesitate to reach out immediately if a residential fire occurs during winter. We’re on standby 24/7 – ready to rush to the rescue when you need help the most. We understand that disasters rarely arise at convenient times. Fortunately, you can count on our restoration specialists to go above and beyond to restore your property and salvage valuables quickly.
We will also do everything to mitigate smoke damage. You’ll need to hire professionals immediately once the embers cool and the flames extinguish. After all, residual soot and smoke will continue to cause harm to your possessions and property. Fortunately, you can count on our Cordova team to work with the urgency and expertise you deserve!
Call (901) 459-3675 to book residential fire and smoke damage restoration services in Cordova today!