Today, we’re going to be going over some of the best ways to prevent fire damage.
Experiencing a house fire is one of the biggest fears a homeowner can face. Moreover, housefires, while dangerous, are also very expensive.
To put some numbers into perspective, here are some fire damage statistics:
Did you know that the average home insurance house fire claim is $78,000.
The biggest cause of house fires comes from the kitchen! Cooking equates roughly $1.2 Billion is property loss making up 169,000 house fires.
Also, 20% of fires occur between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. This makes sense given that, as previously stated, cooking equates to 169,000 house fires.
Lastly, 3.5 minutes is all it takes for a house fire to reach over 1,100℉.
With all these statistics in mind, it’s important to know how to prevent this. So, lets look at 10 ways to prevent fire damage:
When smoke begins to rise your smoke alarm is there to tell you that something is wrong.
Without a properly working smoke alarm, you have no way of knowing if a fire is spreading in your home until it is too late.
In fact, you can prevent fire damage by approximately 50% just by having a properly working smoke alarm!
What if you’re away from home? Most modern smoke alarms will actually send notifications to your phone making you aware of when it is going off in the event you accidentally left on a hot surface.
It sounds simple, but it’s the little things that make the difference with fire damage prevention!
Did you know that there are over 59,000 electrical fires in the United States every year?
The reason for a lot of these electrical fires is excess energy flowing through outlets.
When too much energy at once is flowing through a single outlet or even multiple outlets, it’s likely to create a surge which will result in an electrical fire.
Computers, TV’s, Stereos, and much more use electricity when they are plugged in even if they are not being used or turned on.
This means, while you’re at work, the TV at your home is flowing electricity. It’s only a matter of time before this excess electrical flow causes a surge. So be sure to unplug these items before you leave.
An extra 5 minutes to unplug these items could save you money and headache in fire damage repairs.
Now, this one seems a little odd, but it’s true!
The number one cause of house fires in the United States is faulty heating equipment.
Things like space heaters, central heating systems, and especially fireplaces are likely to trigger if not attended to for periods of time.
So, how do you minimize the risk of your heating equipment causing a house fire?
One of the easiest ways is to clean the air filters regularly.
We recommend cleaning your air filters seasonally but if you live in a relatively consistent climate, once every three months should be ok!
Another simple and great way to prevent fire damage is to position space heaters away from flammable objects.
Objects such as clothing, fabric, and even debris or dust are more likely to catch fire if positioned in front of a space heater for too long.
We know you love your pumpkin spiced candles and we’re not telling you to get rid of them, all that we’re asking is that you blow the flame at the end of the night!
Cooking, candles, or any other type of excessive heat can cause house fires, and ultimately, cause fire damage.
So, whether you are cooking, using candles or anything else that can cause flames, be sure to keep an eye on it!
This is a big one because it is often overlooked.
You may not notice this, but whenever you cook, tiny food particles accumulate under your burner.
Over time, these food particles can become big enough to catch fire which can result in fire damage.
Be sure that at least once a week or every other week to make sure food is not accumulating and risking a fire!
You know that part on the top corner of your dryer? That’s the lint collection tray.
You need to clean this out after each dryer use. If you do not, the lint can catch flame and cause a fire.
In addition to this, clean the filter on your heating system. Lint also fills up your heating exhaust and is highly flammable so make sure you take the time to clean out your heating filter!
On the topic of dryers, did you know that dryer fires occur in over 2,900 homes every year?
The main reason for this is because of clogged vents or filter buildup.
The best way to minimize the risk of dryer fires is to have your dryer inspected every few months or, at the minimum, once a year.
Touching back on tip number 6, another way to prevent dryer fires is to clean the lint trap after each use.
Lastly, before each use, check to make sure small articles of clothing like socks are not stuck in the back of the dryer or behind it.
This is a big one but is often not thought of
The reason this one is often overlooked is because most people do not think they will be out exceedingly long so they leave the cake or the cookies baking in the oven.
Before long, a house fire started.
Even more overlooked are heated appliances such as space heaters, dishwashers, or even heated blankets.
Heated appliances like these when left on if you are not home are liable to catch fire leading to fire damage.
So make sure those heated appliances are turned off when you leave the house.
Now, we’re not asking you to put your electrician’s hat on, but a good rule of thumb is that if a wire is visible or something with an electric plug in looks off, you should investigate it.
Look for damaged outlets, cords that may be frayed or damaged, or even outlets that suddenly don’t work. These are all signs that something may be happening behind the walls of your home.
You cannot prevent all fire damage, but you can take precautionary measures to minimize the risk and you can make yourself prepared to stop any fire from spreading causing any unnecessary damage.
One of the best investments you can make is in a fire extinguisher.
Fire extinguishers last anywhere from 5-15 years and, on average, successfully put out 80% a year.