It’s everyone’s worst nightmare: a fire in their home. House fires are not uncommon, with many potential causes lingering around the home.
Some people are more conscious than others, but everyone can be agreed on one thing — their home catching fire is their worst nightmare. So how do you make sure you’re never in this situation?
The best way to keep yourself and your family safe — and reassure yourself — is to practice good fire safety habits. By knowing how to prevent house fires, you can keep your house fire-free and ensure there’s minimal risk.
Follow these safety tips to sleep soundly at night!
Check Your Smoke Detectors Are In Good Condition
Your smoke detectors should be frequently checked to make sure they’re working and sensitive.
Although many smoke detectors will alert you when the battery is low, it’s important to be proactive and change it out once in a while. The batteries should be changed once every six months and the alarm itself should be replaced by a newer model every ten years.
Check Your Wires
A potential cause of fire in the home are wires that are damaged or frayed.
Make sure that you check all wires in the home for damage. If you have pets, make sure they aren’t left unattended with the cables, as animals have a tendency to chew on cables.
Even if your electronics seem to be in perfect working order, a hidden frayed cable at the back of the television could cause some unexpected damage.
Turn off Appliances When Not In Use
Electrical faults can be unpredictable. Therefore, the safest thing to do is to turn off your appliances when they’re not in use.
Unplugging them at the wall is the safest option but at the very least, if they aren’t actively being used, make sure the switch is set to ‘off’. That makes an electrical fault less likely, and a fault in an unsupervised item is more likely to escalate to a fire.
Don’t Leave Food Cooking
Over 50% of residential fires are caused by cooking.
Using high heat on food can be more dangerous than it seems, so the best way to prevent fires is to actively supervise any cooking. Don’t walk away and leave food in the oven or on the stove — if it burns, it may escalate, and there’s always a chance you left the heat higher than expected.
Don’t Leave Candles Burning
One of the most important tips for preventing fires is to never leave candles burning.
Many people love candles. They’re romantic, atmospheric, and they leave a lovely smell in the house.
However, if you’re one of those people who loves candles, it’s important to never go to bed and leave them burning. No matter how tired you are, they should always be extinguished before you go to bed.
Don’t Leave Flammable Products Near a Source of Heat
Many products are highly flammable, such as hairspray, deodorant, and paint. If you have these products lying around, make sure they’re securely contained and never left near a source of heat such as the fireplace or the stove.
Ideally, they should be contained in a cool, dark cupboard, where there’s no chance of them starting an accidental fire.
Buy Electronics with Built-In Safety Features
Preventing fires is an aim even for the manufacturer of some electronic products.
For example, some high-heat products have an automatic timer. There are hair straighteners and curling irons that will turn off after thirty minutes of use so if you rush out the door to work and leave it on, there’s no chance of you returning home to devastating fire damage.
Before purchasing a high-heat item, do some research and see if any brand offers one with some safety features installed.
Keep the Stove Clean
If your stove ever unexpectedly catches fire, there’s a high chance it wasn’t actually the food you were cooking that caused it.
When preparing food, some often accidentally gets left on the stovetop outside of the pot or pan. This food burns and then the next time the stove is being used, it can become flammable.
It’s important to clean your stove between uses not just for the sake of hygiene but to ensure that there isn’t a nasty accident next time you use it.
Check the Dryer
The lint filter in the dryer is a surprising source of fires. Since dryer lint is flammable, it should be cleaned out regularly and the dryer should never be left to run unattended.
Not only is the lint filter a potential problem, but clothes stained with flammable chemicals can also cause a fire. Take special care with clothes stained with paint or gas, because they can cause an unexpected hazard.
Keep a Fire Extinguisher On Hand
Even if you’re taking all the necessary precautions to ensure you and your home are kept safe, it’s important to keep a fire extinguisher on hand. After all, you can be as careful as can be and there can be an unexpected electrical fault or cooking accident.
A fire extinguisher on hand combined with never leaving any hazards unattended means that if a fire does start up, it should be contained fairly easily.
Be Aware of How to Prevent House Fires and Keep Your Home Safe
It’s important to know how to prevent house fires. They’re common and extremely damaging, and it’s essential you know how to protect both yourself and your property.
By never leaving cooking or candles unattended, being aware of common household risks, and taking these safety precautions, you’ll ensure that you’re never put in the horrible situation of sustaining fire damage to your home.
For more life tips, check out the rest of our blog!