Fire damage can cause significant loss to your home, so it’s important to take steps to protect it. There are several simple and cost-effective ways you can help prevent fire damage in your home.
Install Multiple Smoke Detectors
Install smoke detectors on every floor of your house, near bedrooms and regularly check the batteries twice a year (at least). Additionally, consider installing a carbon monoxide detector near bedrooms and other areas with fuel-burning appliances.
These devices can alert you if there is smoke or carbon monoxide in your home, giving you and your family time to get out safely. However, under the NFPA25 Code, fire protection systems should be inspected visually and have functional tests done to ensure they’re updated and working properly according to design. Tests are done monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, annually, and at 5-year and 10-year intervals.
Clean Up Clutter
Clutter in your home can make it more likely for a fire to spread quickly. Regularly clean up messes and organize items that could easily catch on fire such as newspapers, magazines, and even items stored high on bookshelves. For instance, if you have vaulted ceilings, which are around 13 feet tall, then make sure to clear out any flammable items that may be stored up there. If you need to store items, make sure they are kept away from heat sources and do not block any exits or hallways.
Check Your Electrical System
It’s important to have your electrical system inspected regularly by a professional electrician. The electrician should check for loose connections, frayed cords, incorrect wiring, and other potential problems that can cause electrical fires. They should also check to make sure all outlets are up-to-date and not overloaded. Some signs you will need an electrician include flickering lights, buzzing outlets, or a burning smell coming from your electrical system.
Install Fire Extinguishers
Fire extinguishers should be placed in strategic locations around your home, such as near the kitchen, garage, bedroom, and any other areas where there is potential for a fire. When purchasing a fire extinguisher, make sure it is rated for A, B, and C type fires. Make sure to check the expiration date of the fire extinguisher regularly and keep it well-maintained.
In addition, brush up on the PASS technique for using a fire extinguisher: Pull the pin, Aim at the base of the fire, Squeeze the handle, and Sweep from side to side.
Practice Fire Safety
Teach your family about basic fire safety practices such as never leaving candles unattended or leaving the kitchen while food is cooking on the stove. Additionally, consider having an emergency plan in place in case a fire does occur. Your emergency plan should include two ways out of each room and a designated meeting place outside of the home.
It’s also important to keep combustible materials such as cleaning supplies and gasoline away from heat sources. Additionally, never leave space heaters or candles burning unattended and always turn them off before you leave the house or go to bed.
Conduct Exterior Repairs
According to Get One Desk, there were over 108,000 roofing businesses in 2021, with many of these companies helping homeowners repair their roofs and other exterior features. Having regular maintenance done on your roof and siding can help protect your home from fire damage caused by sparks or embers entering the structure through crevices or cracks. Additionally, make sure to keep trees trimmed away from your house and power lines.
Following these simple tips can help you protect your home from fire damage and keep you and your family safe. It’s important to be proactive in order to prevent fires before they start. Make sure to install smoke detectors, clean up clutter, check your electrical system, install fire extinguishers, practice basic fire safety and conduct exterior repairs. Also, if you don’t already have home insurance, it’s a good idea to get a policy in place. Make sure to review your home insurance options before deciding on one. With proper maintenance and preparation, you can help ensure that your home is safe and secure.