how to keep a fire in your home safely

how to keep a fire in your home safely

Written By

Kait Kucy

Who doesn’t love crowding around a warm fireplace after a long chilly day? It is a tradition many people have upheld over the years that just doesn’t get old.  Sipping hot chocolate with your family and toasting your woolen-socked feet beside the burning embers is an absolutely perfect way to spend a lazy day – especially when there is snow on the ground!

As we approach the fall and winter season, you will have to keep in mind that there are some very important things that you need to prepare and focus on before, during and after having a fire in your home fireplace.

Preparation

It is important to be well prepared for having fires in your home. Not only are there risks involved if you don’t take precautions, but you also end up doing a lot more clean-up work later. Make sure your fireplace is thoroughly cleaned out. If you have not used your fireplace in years it might be a good idea to get it professionally cleaned out – especially your chimney which may have leaves and other debris in it.

Fire Time!

When you have your fireplace cleaned out and ready to go, you’ll want to gather firewood or pre-fabricated logs (you can buy these from any home improvement shop and quite often the grocery store). Make sure that you take care to not overfill the fireplace. Many wood-burning fireplaces are mainly just an added decoration to the room and only offer a small amount of heat to your home, so if you overfill it you may risk the fire spreading into your home. Keep the damper open at all times that you have a fire burning and use a screen in front of the flames to protect your family.

Clean Up For Next Time

Wait until the ashes from your fire are completely cooled and sweep them into a metal bucket that you use specifically for your fireplace. You must ensure that they have completely cooled – the centers of the coals can sometime stay hot for more than one day. You can always douse your coals with some water to ensure that they have cooled. You will also want to ensure that you have your smoke detectors in good working order as well as having a functioning fire extinguisher. You can never be too careful with fire in the home.

Lastly, you’ll want to thoroughly enjoy your fireplace all winter long so be sensible about how you use it. Keep small children away from it and supervise older children if you are showing them how to tend to the fire. Having a fireplace in your home is a wonderful thing during the fall and winter months – you can truly spend a whole evening cozied up by the fire with a great book. Enjoy!