Home Heating Safety

With cold winter temperatures there is an increased use of fireplaces, wood stoves, space heaters, and other alternative heating methods. During these cold winter months, residential fires and other emergencies caused by heating appliances are more prevalent. The following safety tips can help you maintain a safe home this winter:

  • Have your furnace or wood stove inspected to ensure that it is in good working condition.
  • Maintain a 3-foot separation between things that can burn and heating equipment.
  • Check floor heaters to make sure they are not covered by floor coverings or other combustibles.
  • Install and use space heaters according to manufacturer’s instructions. Do not use an extension cord for an electric-powered space heater.
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector. Malfunctioning or improperly installed heating appliances can leak carbon monoxide gas, as can generators. Carbon monoxide fumes are odorless and can quickly overwhelm you indoors. Always run generators outside and away from windows and doors. Ensure proper ventilation when using any fuel-burning appliance.
  • Keep young children away from heaters and stoves– especially when they are wearing pajamas or other loose clothing that can be easily ignited.
  • Keep a screen in front of fireplace openings.
  • Do not use flammable liquids to start fires; use only paper or kindling to start the fire.
  • Use only dry, seasoned wood in a fireplace or wood stove to avoid the build-up of creosote.
  • Allow fireplace and wood stove ashes to cool before disposing in a metal container.
Close window