Shorter days and cooler weather signal that winter isn’t far off, and now is the time to focus on home safety during the heating season. Follow these winter home safety tips to ensure that your family is warm and safe this winter.

Furnace safety

  • Schedule an annual tune-up of your heating system with an HVAC professional. Preventive maintenance will extend the life of your furnace, ensure its safe operation and keep your heating bills low.
  • Keep the area around your furnace clean and clear of debris. Store flammables such as paint, paper and aerosol sprays away from your furnace.
  • Post the emergency phone number of your gas company on your furnace, and call immediately if you smell gas around your unit. Also keep the number for your heating contractor close by. If your furnace quits working, you want to be able to reach your contractor quickly.

Fireplace safety

  • Hire a professional chimney sweep to remove debris from your chimney. This will minimize the possibility of a chimney fire.
  • Burn only properly seasoned wood in your fireplace. Seasoned wood is gray and has cracks in the inner rings.
  • Keep your hearth free of flammable materials and decorations.
  • Make sure your fireplace screen is free of holes, and keep it properly positioned whenever you have a fire.

Carbon monoxide detectors

  • Carbon monoxide leaks can be deadly. Install a carbon monoxide detector on every floor of your home; one should be in close proximity to your bedrooms. Carbon monoxide detectors should meet the UL 2034 safety-standard requirements.
  • Change the batteries in your CO detectors, and test them for proper operation every six months.
  • If your alarm goes off, leave the house, and call 9-1-1. Carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless and tasteless.
  • Know the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, which include headache, dizziness, nausea, confusion, loss of coordination and loss of consciousness. Move to fresh air and call 9-1-1 if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning.

For more expert advice on home safety or to schedule a furnace tune-up with one of our HVAC professionals, contact Apollo Home Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. We serve homeowners in greater Cincinnati.

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