Making your home safer should always be your goal, but it's not always easy to see the potential risks that could have you calling your insurance agent. Fire risks can be hard to spot, but they can cause thousands of dollars’ worth of damage in homes. Use these tips as a starting point for reducing the risk of fires and fire damage in and around your home.
1. Have Your Electrical System Inspected
If you have not had your electrical system inspected in the last few years, do so now. This is particularly important if you've just moved into your home or your system is older. Use only a licensed electrician to inspect it.
2. Clear Away Brush from Around Your Home
Brush, such as leaves and tree branches, become dry and can easily catch on fire. These create a very strong risk of fire, especially during the spring and fall months when lightning can strike. Aim to keep vegetation and all types of debris away from your home by at least five feet. If you live in a high-risk area, 10 feet is often recommended.
3. Clean Your Chimney Flue
If you plan to use our home’s fireplace this year, be sure your chimney has been professionally cleaned. You should have this done at least once per year, but some minimal use systems can be done every two years. A chimney cleaning company removes the creosote that builds up along the interior of the chimney, which is a particularly troublesome fire risk.
4. Minimize the Use of Fire Pits
If you have a fire pit outside your home, use it carefully. You should place it in a space that is completely clear of brush, and the fire pit should be enclosed with sand and stone to keep the fire from spreading. Use only approved fire pits.
5. Check Appliances Each Year
From your home's heating and cooling system to the small space heater you use, all should be inspected each year or every few months. Look for signs of the motors running very hot. Frayed wiring is another area of concern.
By taking the time to look at potential risks and make a few changes, you can significantly reduce your chance of a fire and keep your home insurance claims lower.
Your safety is our priority. Call Lakenan Insurance at 314-721-1500 for more information on St. Louis home insurance.