It may be bittersweet to say goodbye to summer. But fall brings its own charm with crisp autumn afternoons, colorful leaves and fall festivals. As the weather beings to change, here are some helpful fire safety reminders from the Asheville Fire Department.
Soon you may need to fire up the furnace so it is important to have your system professionally inspected, cleaned and serviced. Filters need to be changed or cleaned, and you should always make sure combustibles are stored at least 3 feet from the furnace. Have any alternative heating sources checked out as well, such as fireplaces and wood-burning stoves. Creosote buildup can cause heat buildup and ultimate cause a house fire.
Before plugging in your space heaters for the first time be sure to inspect the cords to be sure there is no frayed wires. Keep them away from combustibles and out of the path of children and pets. Space heaters need space and it is recommended to keep a 3 foot distance around a space heater.
Having working smoke alarms in your home give you precious time to escape a home fire alive. Tips regarding smoke alarms:
- Replace the batteries twice a year.
- Clean dust from smoke alarms with a vacuum attachment.
- Replace units that are over 10 years old.
- Push the test button monthly to ensure proper operation.
- Have an outside meeting place where your family will meet in case of a fire. Practice home fire drills!
Carbon monoxide alarms
Carbon monoxide, or CO, alarms are an important part of your home safety plan too. They detect unburned gases that may leak from gas burning appliances. They must also be tested monthly and have batteries replaced annually. CO is an odorless deadly gas.
Holiday fire safety
November, December and January account for a larger percentage of residential structure fires than any other months in the year. Please be careful when cooking, keep kids and animals away from the stove/oven. Keep decorations away from open flames and keep exits clear of obstructions.
Many Asheville residents use candles in their holiday decorating to create a festive and warm atmosphere. Unfortunately, candles can lead to home fires when they are left unattended and ignite nearby combustibles. Use sturdy candle holders that are large enough to collect candle wax and are resistant to tipping over. Keep candles up and out of the reach of children. That goes for the matches and lighters.