Fire Damage Cleanup: Staying Safe and Warm in Chicago’s Winters
The average low temperature in Chicago for January through February sits between 22 and 26 degrees Fahrenheit. That means keeping our houses warm these next couple months is extremely important. Unfortunately, heating devices are the second most common cause of house fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association.
Fire Damage Cleanup in Chicago
So, how can we keep our homes warm and comfortable while also keeping them safe from a fire? Here are some heating principles that should be followed to keep your home from needing fire damage cleanup.
If using space heaters, be sure to never leave them on unattended. Only plug space heaters into direct outlets, avoid the use of extension cords. Do not place any flammable objects within 5 feet of your space heater (this includes furniture and walls) to prevent objects from bursting into flames. Leaving a heater next to a pile of clothes, for example, can cause heat to build up in those materials and can eventually ignite into flames. Space heaters are a great resource when it comes to warming up your home, just be sure to use them safely and responsibly.
If you have a wood burning stove, it is imperative to keep flammable objects away from the flames. Make sure there is enough clearance between the stove and combustible materials, including floors, walls, and ceilings. Ensure there is proper ventilation by making sure the chimney flue is able to safely vent outside, that it is kept clean and clear from buildup and debris. Blockages can cause flames to spread outside of the fireplace and can make them grow very quickly. Keep a fire extinguisher on hand nearby if you utilize a wood burning stove. Only burn dry, well-seasoned wood, and avoid putting any other material in the stove.
Make sure your furnace receives regular maintenance and inspections. Your furnace also requires proper ventilation which is most easily achieved by changing out the air filter at least every 3 months. A dirty air filter will impede the air flow, which means your furnace has to work extra hard to push the air through. This extra workload can cause the motor to overheat and increases the risk of a fire from starting. If your furnace is not cleaned regularly, excess dust will build up on the motor and heating coils and can act as kindling to a flame. It is also important to keep the motor bearings lubricated to reduce friction and heat. As with space heaters and wood burning stoves, it is very important to keep flammable or combustible objects away from your furnace to reduce the risk of fires from breaking out.
Keeping your home warm this winter is very important, and keeping it safe from fire damage is even more important. If you do need fire damage cleanup, regardless of the cause, GCPRO is here for you. It is critical that fire damage cleanup begin as soon as possible to mitigate any further damage to your home. That is why we are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to make sure we are there as soon as you need us. Stay warm this winter and remember if you need fire damage cleanup to call GCPRO.
For 24/7 Emergency Service, Please Call 847-656-3322.