5 Fireplace Safety Tips to Keep You Warm and Cozy

two sets of hands stretched out to feel the warmth of a fireplace

There’s nothing quite as cozy as the warm glow of a fireplace. We feel a natural connection and positive reaction from the ambiance of a fire. It’s one of the reasons we love watching the yule log channel on TV during the holiday months. Even if we can’t have the real thing, we love the look and sound of a fire. Whether you enjoy the atmosphere of a wood-burning fireplace or a gas fireplace, there are some safety precautions we recommend following to help protect yourself and your family while you enjoy the fireplace. 

 

Carbon Monoxide Detector

Most people have one or two smoke detectors in their homes to protect themselves and their families in the event of a fire. If you have a fireplace in your home, we highly recommend that you also install a carbon monoxide (CO) detector. Because carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless, tasteless, toxic gas, without a CO detector, you may not notice a leak until you feel nauseous or worse. 

The best place to put your CO detector is near your furnace and fireplace, but not directly next to them. Because carbon monoxide is slightly less dense than air, it will rise with the warm air in your home, so you’ll want to position the detector about five feet off the ground or on the ceiling. If you have multiple levels in your home or a split level, and your fireplace is on the lower level, it would be beneficial also to put a CO detector on the stairway to detect any rising gases. 

 

Annual Inspections

It’s essential to schedule annual inspection appointments for your fireplace to keep you and your home safe. It’s far better to inspect the mechanisms before lighting the fire to prevent injuries or accidents. Maintaining the fireplace also helps to extend the life of your fireplace, keeping your home warm when you need it to be. Your HVAC specialist will look at the gas valve to ensure it works properly, check that the vents and chimney are free of debris and blockages, as well as clean up the glass and hearth. The annual inspection gives you peace of mind that you can operate your system without concerns. When you book with Clean Air Solutions, we can add fireplace inspection to your general HVAC service appointments to simplify things for you. 

 

Seasonal Cleaning

All appliances benefit from seasonal maintenance and cleaning. Keeping your chimney clear of debris and soot is vital for health and safety when you have a wood fireplace. Keeping your gas fireplace clean is also important to keep it running efficiently and safely. Although a gas fireplace will not have the level of soot a wood-burning one does, dust, debris, and light soot can still collect inside the hearth and around the vents. The glass of your fireplace will also discolour in between cleanings making it challenging to see the flames and look generally dirty. While you can clean your own gas fireplace, if you don’t have the time or feel nervous about the process, then our professionals are here to help.

 

Chimney Cleaning

If your home has a wood-burning fireplace or stove, you’re probably familiar with the amount of soot and tar that is produced by burned wood. Ash and tar will settle into the hearth of your fireplace, but particles will also rise through the chimney, clinging to the sides of the structure. Those particles can build up to cause several hazards, such as fires in your chimney or blocked ventilation. Blocked ventilation can lead to carbon monoxide entering your home if it is not cleaned regularly. A professional chimney cleaning by fireplace experts who know how to handle soot and debris safely and efficiently in any type of chimney will help you enjoy your roaring fire without worrying.

 

Safety Perimeter

A fireplace is often the focal point in the room where everyone wants to gather around, including children and pets. We recommend setting up a safety perimeter around the hearth to keep everyone at a safe distance from the heat. Gas fireplaces and gas inserts may have a safety guard that will help reduce the amount of heat on the glass, but it can still be hot to the touch. Animals, children, or anyone with a reduced ability to sense heat are at risk for burns. Defining a clear perimeter will help prevent accidents or injuries. It’s also essential to ensure that no flammable materials or heat-sensitive products are placed within your safety perimeter. 

 

Chimney Cleaning in Edmonton

Does your fireplace or chimney need professional cleaning? Our professional HVAC cleaners are ready to perform inspections and cleaning along with fireplace repair. When you book your annual furnace and duct cleaning service, we can also add on fireplace cleaning. Contact our professionals and ask about furnace chimney cleaning cost today.