Spending a little time to assure your home safety may be the best use of your weekend or an evening. Electrical, chemical and fire hazards can be managed in your home by implementing these practices:
- Never overload an electrical outlet. Power strips and surge protectors are safer to use than cube plugs that have two or three outlets inside them.
- Don't run cords under rugs and keep them away from anything that gets hot.
- Repair or replace appliances that spark, smoke or short out.
- Try not to use an extension cord with a space heater, but if you have no other choice, make sure the amperage of the extension cord meets or exceeds that required by the heater.
- Keep toxic and flammable chemicals tightly sealed on high shelves in the garage if you have children in the home. If your garage is attached to your home, make sure there's a good seal between the door and the adjoining wall. Unwanted fumes can drift indoors from the garage. Consider installing an exhaust fan in the garage to remove fumes and keep the air pressure in the garage lower than in the house. This will prevent air movement into the house.
- Never store oily paint or finishing rags in the open. Spontaneous combustion can occur as the rags dry and could create a fire. Soak rags in a bucket of water for several days and dry them before throwing them away.
- Check your smoke detector batteries several times a year.
- If your home has an attached garage or you use any fuel-burning appliances, make sure you have carbon monoxide (CO) detectors in place. CO is a deadly gas that has no odor or color.
- Fireplace chimneys should be cleaned by a professional periodically, depending on how often you use the fireplace. Creosote builds inside and can start a dangerous fire.
- Have your furnace serviced annually. The HVAC technician will check to make sure thatthe flue is clear and will clean all the parts. He also will check the fuel line to make sure all connections are tight.
If you'd like more information about your HVAC system and home safety, please contact us at Joe Behr Plumbing & Heating. We've provided superior HVAC services for the Mid-Ohio area since 1965.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Mid-Ohio area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about home safety and other HVAC topics, visit our website.