It’s easy to dismiss fire risks and assume that you’ll be fine. After all, this is just one of those things that just happens to other people, right? Wrong. Fire risks are real and if you don’t know the risks and potential fire hazards lurking in your home, you’ll put yourself and your family at risk. Here’s the information you need in order to reduce the risks and thus protect your property from a fire.
Appliances and Plugs
The appliances and plugs in your home can be hazardous if faults arise. Freezers with electrical faults inside them have been known to start major fires, and that’s why you need to keep your appliances in good condition and check them regularly. Safe appliances will have the BEAB Mark of Safety, meaning they’ve passed tests to show they’re safe to use. Plugs shouldn’t be overloaded into various extensions or extensions on top of extensions. If you do this, you increase your chances of an electrical fire breaking out.
Check Your Gas and Electric Systems
Things like loose gas pipes or leaky valves should be checked for on a regular basis around the outside of your home or wherever the natural gas supply is. Such problems can cause explosions that destroy homes. The electrical box should be checked too. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, let a professional electrician carry out these checks.
Maintain Your Fireplace
Fireplaces can cause devastation in the home. Even a burning log in rolling out of the fireplace and into the carpet can start a huge fire. That’s why it’s necessary to use a fire guard to prevent such accidents happening. It’s also worth putting out the fire when you leave the house, even if it’s for a short time.
Cookers and Chip Pans
Cooking is the most common cause of house fires. Simple things like positioning pans correctly on the hop so they’re less likely to be knocked off can help. However, chip pans are the most common cause of home fires, so you definitely need to understand how to use them safely. For example, you should never fill the pan more than a third with oil. And if fire doesn’t break out, never use water; use a dry blanket or towel instead to stop it spreading.
A Smoke Alarm on Every Level
Smoke alarms are essential, and even if it annoys you when you’re cooking, you should never turn it off or remove the battery. That’s simply too big a risk to take. One is probably not enough if you live in an ordinary two storey home. There should be one smoke alarm on every level.
If You’re a Smoker, Take Extra Care in the Home
Aside from the health effects we all know about smoking, you also need to consider the potential fire hazards that come with smoking. You should take extra care because if you fall asleep with a cigarette in your hand, you could inadvertently cause a fire.
Create a Family Escape Plan
Of course, you want to ensure a fire doesn’t break out in your home or rental property to begin with. It’s mentioned in our ‘what do Landlords fear most‘ article. But there is always a risk, even if you make your home as safe as it can be. That’s why you need to create an escape plan for your family. Understand where fires are more likely to start and then formulate an escape plan around them.