This winter, keep your home warm and safe by avoiding these heating mistakes.
This winter has not been particularly severe in terms of temperature, but it has been frigid enough to cause some anxiety about the necessity of turning on the heat inside the house. The results of fires can be catastrophic, but they can be avoided by staying away from certain simple blunders.
John D’Alessandro, president of the New York State Firefighters Association, remarked, “We don’t want to have to come to your house.”
According to the National Fire Protection Association, heating equipment is the second most common cause of house fires across the country.
It becomes cold very rapidly in Upstate New York, D’Alessandro said. Quickly and frequently, they get used by the public.
More than half (five out of ten) of all fires may be attributed to the use of space heaters.
If a portable space heater were to be pushed over, “you know, the stuff we own nowadays may easily catch fire,” D’Alessandro said. They heat up rapidly and intensely.
Recent law enacted by New York Governor Kathy Hochul mandates that all space heaters sold in the state include a thermostat, an automatic shut off, and certification in an effort to reduce the dangers posed by these appliances.
When purchasing, “make sure it’s a renowned brand,” as D’Alessandro phrased it. Check if Underwriters Laboratories or another reputable testing facility has certified it as safe to use.
In addition to space heaters, there are a few additional maintenance tasks that should be remembered all during the cold season.
Is your gas furnace operational? Would you say that your chimney is free of debris? Test the smoke and CO detectors to make sure they have good batteries.
One on every floor, D’Alessandro claimed. Put as many as you can afford in the basement and any other areas with potential fire hazards.
All sound advice, but as the experts point out, nothing beats taking on responsibility for one’s own actions.
When it comes to fire safety, “if anything doesn’t seem right, don’t do it,” D’Alessandro added.