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Fall is in the forecast and as the weather gets colder, it’s important to brush up on some fire safety tips for your home. In 2015, there were 1,345,500 fires reported in the United States, 501,500 of these fires were structure fires which caused 2,685 deaths. Learn the fall safety tips that could prevent house fires from happening to you as the temperature, and leaves, begin to fall.

4 Fire Tips to Prevent House Fires This Fall

  1. 1. Candles

There is nothing as relaxing as lighting your favorite fall scented candle, but candles are a number on cause of house fires. Only burn a candle while you are in the same room and ensure it is at least 12 feet from any flammable objects. Never leave your candle burning unattended, especially in a home with pets or small children. Do not leave any candles burning when you leave or while asleep.

  1. 2. Heating Equipment

Have all heating equipment checked by a professional prior to use. This will ensure there is no damage from disuse over the spring and summer. Ensure that the heater is surrounded by three feet of empty space and are turned off when you leave the house or go to bed. Never use an extension cord with your space heater. Do not use a space heater under anything that could catch fire. Heating equipment is the second leading cause of house fires, only to cooking related incidents.

  1. 3. Chimney Check

No matter what fuel you use to heat your home (wood, coal, or gas); your chimney is a major component. Always have your chimney inspected by a professional to ensure there are no cracks in the bricks or mortar and that the chimney and flue are clear of buildup. A dirty chimney is not only a fire hazard, but can cause carbon monoxide, an odorless and colorless gas, to enter your home. Be sure the fireplace is clean from debris and buildup before use and that all filters are in good condition. On average, it’s suggested that furnace filters should be changed every three to four months.

  1. 4. Smoke Detectors

Make a habit of changing the batteries in your smoke detector every fall and spring when you change the clocks. This will help ensure your detectors are working and helps you to remember. It is advised that you have at least one smoke detector per floor of your home. Test all smoke detectors once a month to guarantee they are in working condition.

Other fire prevention tips

As the leaves fall, be sure to remove them properly. This includes cleaning the gutters and keeping leaves from piling up around your home. Electrical components are also a danger when preventing house fires. Never use cords or wires that are frayed or have cracks in the rubber coating. Never pinch or cover any cords or outlets when in use.