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The holidays are just about here! Although many of us will immediately think about delicious food, family gatherings and gift giving for the little ones, it’s smart to take a step back and make sure your home is a safe place to celebrate.

While many of these tips are common sense, they can be easy to forget because life is so busy or we are in a rush. Spend a few hours this month making sure your home is ready to welcome guests.

Furnace and Heating Equipment Tips


1. Get your furnace serviced and/or repaired by a professional. Don’t attempt to make repairs yourself.
2. If you are using space heaters, plug them directly into the wall. Don’t use extension cords with them. Now is a good time to inspect the cord for any damage.
3. Never hang fabric or decorations near your space heaters, radiators or other heat sources. Make sure you leave plenty of space around the heat source.
4. In case of a power outage, never use your oven to heat your home.

Holiday Decorating Tips


1. Keep open flames from candles at least three feet from anything flammable.
2. If you plan to use your wood burning fireplace for the ambiance, make sure your chimney has been serviced and you’re given the “okay” to use it. Make sure you use a sturdy screen to prevent sparks from flying into the room.
3. If you display a live tree, make sure to keep it watered regularly.
4. Do not overload your electrical circuits or extension cords. Typically, three strings of lights is the maximum amount you can string together. Inspect the wires before you decorate as well.
5. Use caution when decorating elevated sections of your home. Always use a sturdy ladder and have a spotter on the ground.


General Safety Tips


1. Make sure that vents for your dryer, furnace, stove and fireplace are clear of snow, paying extra attention during and after a heavy snow.
2. Gas and charcoal grills should only be used outside. They can produce carbon monoxide, so don’t use them in your garage.

As you can see, some of these tips are very easy to implement and most of them you can do yourself. In the case of furnace and chimney inspections, remember that hiring a reputable professional will help keep your family safe. If you have any questions, be sure to contact us.