During the cold winter months, we all use some source of home heating to stay warm inside… but with this feature comes a few risks that we should be aware of and plan for. In fact, heating is one of the leading causes of home fires in the US.
First, let’s look at one of the main areas of concern for home heating: space heaters. These are popular devices that work well to heat small areas of a home but are not meant to replace a heating system.
Space heaters are one of the leading causes of home fires and the fires they create are deadly: an estimated 1 of every 10 fires started by a space heater results in death.
These are the simple rules to follow when using a space heater:
Never leave it unattended
Never use an extension cord to plug it in
Never fall asleep with a space heater on
The other big worry with home heating safety is carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is an odorless and poisonous gas that results from burning materials in your home such as wood, charcoal, and kerosene.
The effects of carbon monoxide exposure include feeling sick and with enough exposure, can result in death.
For most homes, the fireplace is the most likely source to introduce carbon monoxide into the home. With proper ventilation fireplaces are safe. In order to make sure that your fireplace emissions are safely being released outside, have your fireplace cleaned and checked every year.