Enjoy a great wood fire with some simple fireplace safety precautions…
- Only burn clean, dry, well-seasoned wood to avoid creosote build up.
- Don’t overload the fire with large amounts of wood.
- Don’t use flammable liquids to start the fire.
- Ensure the distance of your fire to other combustible materials is appropriate e.g. stored firewood, kindling, newspaper, walls / floors, furniture, drapes, books, mantles.
- Use an appropriate sized spark screen to keep embers contained.
- Before lighting your fire, open the damper & keep open until the fire has burnt out and ashes have cooled.
- Remove cooled ashes regularly and store safely in a covered metal container away from your house to dispose of only when completely cooled.
- You should never smell smoke in your house. If you do, venting may be askew allowing deadly carbon monoxide to enter your home.
- If you have other fossil fuel burning appliances in the house (e.g. a furnace), ensure they have sufficient combustion air / fresh air supply so they don’t allow dangerous carbon monoxide (CO) to enter the home while the fireplace / wood stove is in use. Similarly, don’t starve your wood-burning fireplace or wood stove for combustion air by operating other appliances that vent outside e.g. range hood vents, bathroom exhaust fans, central vacuum, clothes dryer.
- Have working smoke alarms & carbon monoxide detectors in your home, and test them regularly.
- Keep a working charged Class A fire extinguisher nearby.
- Teach children to stay clear of a hot stove & burning fire. Never leave children or pets alone when a fire is in use.
- Completely extinguish a fire before going to bed or leaving the house.
- Have your chimney cleaned & inspected at least once a year by qualified professional.
- Talk with a qualified insurance professional to ensure you have adequate & appropriate coverage
Enjoy a warm & cozy fire this winter by taking necessary fireplace safety precautions and due care!