Getting House Ready For Winter Checklist

According to the National Fire Protection Association, fire departments respond to an average of approximately 355,000 home fires per year.

You might think you’re safe: you’re under retirement age, you don’t smoke, and you always check the stove twice before leaving the house. Unfortunately, approximately 14% of fires in the US are caused by heating equipment failure. Of those fires, 19% result in fatalities, and 12% result in injury.

Heavy use of heating equipment during the winter months can make it more vulnerable to failure, which can lead to fires.

With winter approaching fast, now’s the time to check your HVAC quality and keep you and your family safe. What can you do and how to prepare for winter this year?

Check Your Wiring

It’s easy to miss a torn wire hidden by drywall or gnawed at by pests, but did you know it’s the wiring you can see that requires regular attention as well. Aside from pesky rodents, the insides of your walls are well-insulated, and wiring will last for decades without issue. Unfortunately, the rest of your home isn’t entirely as secure.

Moisture in basements, exposure to the sun, and even dust build-up can damage wiring. Keep an eye on your HVAC’s wiring condition and if you see anything that doesn’t look right, contact a professional. Touching damaged wires is incredibly dangerous.

Give It Space

Crowding your heating and cooling appliances is a surefire way to see sparks. Keep at least one-meter clearance around all HVAC appliances in your home. Even plastic or metal containers can pose a potential hazard over time.

If children are playing in the basement, make sure they keep away from any equipment you might have. A small accident can turn into a major incident.

Many of the more dangerous possible sources of damage are hard to detect with the untrained eye. If your heating equipment is in the same area as your dryer, make sure to keep the lint trap clean and clear. Dispose of lint in covered containers to prevent highly flammable lint particles from causing damage or causing fires.

Replace Filters, Clean Air Ducts

HVAC equipment filters trap airborne particles while air duct and vents can harbor debris. The US Department of Energy states that the most crucial maintenance needed to ensure heating units’ efficiency is to replace the air filters.

Replacing air filters and cleaning air ducts and vents will ultimately expand the heating unit’s life expectancy, keep monthly utility costs down and decrease the potential for a fire.  

Annual Inspections

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Most of us have fallen behind on our yearly physicals, dental cleanings, and Christmas cards but failing to have your heating and cooling systems checked is an oversight you can’t afford.

Contact All A’s Plumbing and Heating and schedule your appointment. Our skilled technicians will check your system for any current or potential problems. Once they’re finished with their inspection, we can take care of any concerns or issues.

If you have any space heaters or window air conditioners not in use during your inspection, make sure to mention that to your technician. Space heaters and window air conditioners are extreme fire hazards if not maintained properly.

Keep Your Home Safe

Keeping your home safe is your responsibility, but you aren’t alone in it. By following these steps, you can prevent damage and even death due to fire. There’s no escaping the coming winter, but you’ll be able to rest easily in the warmth if you keep to these steps.

If you have any questions or want more information on maintaining your heating equipment correctly, get in touch with All A’s Plumbing and Heating to speak with our knowledgeable staff. We’re here to help keep you and your home safe.