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Common Holiday Fire Hazards

How to Protect Your Family from Holiday Fire Hazards

These holiday safety tips can prevent many of the household accidents that occur in the winter. Some are related to the holidays themselves, while others are caused by home heating. With care and prevention, you can eliminate these seasonal threats.

  • Get the fireplace cleaned. Contact a chimney sweep or a fireplace professional to clean the chimney and the fireplace box. Unless you burn seasoned wood exclusively, there could be dangerous creosote deposits inside each. Creosote is highly flammable and burns hot. A chimney fire could be well underway before you discover it.
  • Don’t overload the Christmas lights or decorations. Even if you’re using LED light strings, look for information on how many you can plug together. When cords are overloaded, they get hot and could conceivably start a fire.
  • Water your Christmas tree daily and keep candles away from it.
  • Be vigilant in the kitchen. Kitchen fires are a hazard year-round, but especially during the holiday season. Keep towels and hot pads away from the stove and oven and watch children carefully.
  • Candles are a real hazard year-round, especially around kids and pets. Keep them out of reach of both. Put LED candles inside flammable centerpieces. Don’t let them burn unattended and burn them in secure and fireproof candleholders.
  • Get your furnace tuned up by an HVAC pro. It will last longer and run more efficiently.
  • Check your carbon monoxide detectors monthly during the heating season.
  • Use space heaters cautiously. They can be a major threat to holiday safety from fires and as tripping hazards. Don’t use them with extension cords and be sure to keep them away from any flammable materials. Only use space heaters that have tip-over switches and test them periodically.
  • Remember to put the matches and lighters up and out of reach. Injuries to children from both double during the holidays.

When you put holiday safety first on the list of daily activities and concerns, your risk of accidents diminishes. For more information about heating safety, contact Sherlock Heating & Air Conditioning providing HVAC services for North County homeowners.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Diego and San Marcos, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).