HVAC fire prevention is something you should pay attention to. Yes, modern heat pumps and air conditioners are safer than they’ve ever been, but they’re not the main culprit. There is a far more nefarious agent at play that can lead to a disaster like your house burning down. Let’s make sure that doesn’t happen.
HVAC Fire Prevention
Do you know what heating and air system is most likely to burn your house down without a second thought? It’s the entirely too common space heater. Space heaters cause more fires than anything else. An air-source heat pump or conventional furnace is about a billion times safer than a space heater. Okay, that might be a slight exaggeration, but they’re a lot safer.
In short, the number one thing you can do for HVAC fire prevention is to avoid using a space heater. Just don’t do it.
I do realize that answer might be a bit unsatisfying for some of you.
How to Safely Use a Space Heater if You Absolutely Must
First, make sure you keep plenty of open ‘space’ around the space heater. Three-feet or more is a good rule of thumb. Dropping flammable objects like books, newspapers (do people still read these?), magazines, or whatever within that three-foot safe zone is a bad idea. It’s a bad idea, because flammable things tend to catch on fire.
Second, never ever use a space heater with an extension cord. Yes, they can be convenient. Yes, they can allow you to stay warm even on the other side of a room. Yes, they may burst into flame without a moment’s notice. Trust me, extension cords and space heaters are a bad idea.
Third, do not put a space heater on any surface where it might tip over. A space heater that has fallen over is a space heater about to burst into home-consuming flames. You want flat, stable surfaces and ONLY flat, stable surfaces. Everything else is wrong and bad and explosive.
Fourth, shut off the space heater before you go to sleep. Are you worried you’ll get cold at night? That is why humanity invented blankets and dogs. Both of those things will keep you way safer and warmer than a space heater running while you sleep.
Remember, HVAC Fire Prevention is Space Heater Fire Prevention
Safety is not very hard folks. Keep the area clear, avoid extension cords, mount the space heater on a stable surface, and don’t run it while you sleep. If you do those four things, you will be an HVAC fire prevention master. Plus, you’ll keep your house from burning down.
Which is nice.