For those of us in the Bucks County, PA area the recent fire in Peddler’s Village sent a shock-wave throughout our community. Although the fire was not started through any heating or faulty HVAC reasoning, it certainly makes us more aware of potential hazards in the winter months with heating our homes. It is vitally important to be cautious and hyper vigilant in making sure your Heater or furnace are working properly and maintained.
Heating safety tips from HVAC Philly to keep your Bucks County,PA home safe:
Heating equipment is a leading cause of home fire deaths. Half of home heating equipment fires are reported during the months of December, January, and February. Some simple steps can prevent most heating-related fires from happening.
- Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
- Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
- Never use your oven to heat your home.
- Have a qualified professional, like HVAC Philly, install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
- Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
- Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
- Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
- Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
- Test smoke alarms at least once a month.
Protect your home from carbon monoxide poisoning:
Carbon monoxide poisoning is extremely dangerous. The gas has the potential to cause people to experience nausea, chest pain, extreme dizziness and numerous other symptoms. Medical attention needs to be sought immediately if you believe you have inhaled large quantities of this substance.
Here are some things you can do to lower your family’s risk to coming into contact with this gas.
You should install carbon monoxide alarms on every floor of your home, and you should ensure a backup battery is present. This will allow it to work even if your home experiences a power outage.
Get Annual Inspections
Gas leaks are most likely to come from your HVAC system. If you suspect a dangerous gas is being emitted, then you definitely do not want to inspect the area yourself. Contact a professional such as HVAC Philly in the Bucks County, PA area, who has dealt with these systems before. Even if nothing is discovered, you will have peace of mind that everything is OK.
Turn Your Heater off if You Suspect a Leak
Unfortunately, this gas is completely odorless and colorless. Therefore, it is almost impossible to detect until it started creating severe health problems. People in the vicinity are going to experience flu-like symptoms. One way to tell if the symptoms are from a poisoning or from an actual flu is to see how you feel once you leave the house. If you feel completely fine elsewhere and only feel awful at home, then there is probably a leak.
Carbon monoxide can be deadly, but with proper vigilance, you can stay one step ahead of it. Keep your family out of harm’s way and take essential precautionary measures to stay safe!
Contact HVAC Philly, online or by phone 215-725-6111 with any questions or concerns.