Fireplace Safety 101: How to Protect Your Kids and Pets
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  • Fireplace Safety 101: How to Protect Your Kids and Pets

    Fireplace Safety 101: How to Protect Your Kids and Pets

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    There’s nothing quite like the crackling warmth of a fireplace on a cold winter evening, but if you have kids and pets, that fire will create more anxiety than it resolves. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to keep your children and your pets protected when you decide it’s time for a fire. Remember, fireplace safety is important.

    Install a Barrier

    Even if you’ve installed glass doors on your fireplace, it’s important that you take the time to install a barrier that keeps your children and pets far away from the action. Glass doors get incredibly hot, and hospitals across the country report that numerous kids each year being burned by the glass doors associated with gas fireplaces. There are numerous barrier types available, but you will want to look for a sturdy gate that fits around the outside of your fireplace’s hearth. It should be tall enough that your children cannot climb (or your pets cannot jump) over it easily.

    Make Tools or Accessories Inaccessible

    Most of the fireplace tools – including pokers and shovels – that you’ll find on the market these days are made of extremely heavy cast iron. While it may not be much for you, as an adult, to pick up one of those tools from the rack when you need to use it, but if a child should run into it or knock it over onto themselves while playing, serious injuries could result. Be sure that you keep your fireplace tools and accessories out of the reach of kids and pets. The best way to do this? Keep them behind the barrier just out of reach.

    Keep Toys and Other Materials Away from the Fireplace

    It isn’t uncommon for kids to leave toys and clothes just about everywhere, and even pets can be mischievous when it comes to their toys. It’s important to make sure that flammable clothing or toys like ropes and dolls are kept several feet back from the fireplace. A single ember is all it takes to light these on fire, and that fire could quickly spread. Let your little ones know that the fireplace area is off-limits for toys, and if cannot supervise your pets near the fire, keep them in a separate room until you can.

    Install and Check Fire and CO Detectors

    Perhaps the most important thing you can do – and the thing that is sadly overlooked in many households – involves installing and checking your fire and carbon monoxide detectors at least once each month. Unfortunately, house fires can and do occur as the result of using a fireplace whether the result of an accident or failure to keep the chimney cleaned and maintained. A chimney fire can quickly spread to the surrounding structure and lead to a total loss, too. A fire and CO detector will alert you and allow you to escape to safety before it’s too late.

    Of course, supervision is important, and so is ensuring that your fireplace and chimney are clean and in good working order. Though the supervision may fall on you, you can leave the maintenance and cleaning to the experts at Lindemann Chimney Service. Call or schedule an appointment online today for your annual maintenance.

     

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