With the temperatures dropping in the Northern and Central California, the Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) persuades the customers to be extremely cautious when heating homes.
A serious hazard for homes
Electric heating equipment, like space heaters, can cause fires at homes if not correctly used or monitored. Fuel burning appliances, like gas stoves, furnaces and water heaters, can elevate carbon monoxide risk if not properly working.
As stated by the National Fire Protection Association, heating devices are the second main causes of home fires in the US, and during the 2009 – 2013 period, these accounted for about 56,000 structure fires in each year. Almost half of the fires happened during December to February. The main contributor to the space heater fires is those heating devices being too close to those objects which can burn, like furniture, mattresses, bedding and clothing.
Tips from PG&E
PG&E persuades a focus in terms of safety heating. They offer the tips below.
• To put the space heaters on hard, non-flammable and level surfaces, not on carpets or rugs.
• To not place any object on the space heaters or use them for drying shoes or clothes.
• To turn off the space heaters especially when sleeping or leaving a room.
• To keep every flammable material a minimum of three feet away from the heating sources, as well as to supervise little children if a fireplace or space heater is used.
• To not use stoves, ovens and similar cooking devices to heat a home.
• To place carbon monoxide detectors for warning when concentration levels get high. Since 2011, every single family home in California is required to have these detectors. Additionally, these should be placed close to sleeping areas, and for their batteries to be replaced two times each year.
• To ensure that a flue is open when making use of a fireplace, so the combustion by-products are vented through a chimney.
• To not use products generating hazardous levels of carbon monoxide, like charcoal, propane heaters, barbecues and generators, when inside a home.
Aside from these tips, in order to avoid fires, it is always best to have heating and gas burning equipment serviced regularly. For those in the UK, T.H.S has reliable and registered engineers who can help secure a home.