Home heating safety

5 Tips For Home Heating Safety

Home heating is incredibly important in the winter months, especially in Vancouver and throughout the Lower-Mainland. However, your home heating system can pose a challenge of its own. Appliances can overheat, boilers can burst and furnaces if not cleaned and maintained ca break down or cause a fire. Here are 5 heating tips to help keep you warm and safe over the winter months.

1. Get Consistent Maintenence Checks

The first and most important tip is maintenance. We cannot emphasize enough how important maintenance checks are for your home heating system. All appliances should be properly monitored, updated and maintained including your boiler and furnace.

Furnace Inspection

Your furnace can overheat and cause fires as a result of the following points:

  • Corroded flame sensors
  • Foreign objects lodged in the air vents.
  • Blocked air vents

A maintenance check will ensure that your furnace is running smoothly and safely.

Boiler Inspection

Common problems that can arise with your boiler include:

  • The heat exchangers are plugged
  • A heat exchanger is cracked
  • The zone valve motors have worn out
  • The thermostat doesn’t work
  • The ignition module is dirty
  • The thermocouple is worn out

In a boiler inspection, your HV/AC specialist will check the performance of your system and its functionality.  

2. Turn Space Heaters And Portable Heaters Off

Space heaters are incredibly useful, they can warm a whole room without the need for a furnace or boiler. However, because they are so powerful, they can get incredibly warm and overheat if left on for long periods of time. Avoid leaving a space heater on when you leave your home. It’s best to turn it off and unplug it.

3. Test Your Smoke Alarm Monthly

A smoke alarm is legally required in all homes in BC, but check to see that you have both a smoke alarm and a carbon monoxide detector.

Carbon monoxide is a gas that has no smell or warning signs. It is found in fumes when you burn fuel for heat, ex: the furnace, fireplace or gas stove can all put you at risk for carbon monoxide leaks.  At home, carbon monoxide leaks can be fatal when inhaled. Be sure that both your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors are working and properly installed. It’s best to get them checked once a month.

4. Unplug All Electronics And Appliances

One of the leading causes of house fires is heating appliances left on and plugged in. It’s very important to turn off things like your toaster, coffee maker or hair styling tools once you are finished using them. This also applies to desk and table lamps. Smaller lamps can overheat incredibly quickly. If they are left on they can cause fires. It’s best to both turn off lamps and appliances, as well as unplug them. To ensure there is no residual energy from the socket.

5. Have Your Stove Professionally Cleaned And Inspected

Grime and buildup inside and on top of your stove can be a real fire hazard if left to get out of control. Thoroughly clean your oven monthly and call a specialist if anything seems out of the ordinary. Be sure your oven is turned off before you leave the house, know the smell and sound of a gas leak so you can identify one if it happens. Be sure the burners on your stove are fully turned off after cooking.

Call Your HV/AC Specialist For An Inspection Today

At Hillcrest Plumbing & Heating we take heating safety very seriously. Our specialists bring the experience and education you need to get the job done, with over 50 years servicing Vancouver and the lower-mainland our team is local and trusted. We also offer 24/7 emergency repair services because we know, no one expects a plumbing or heating emergency. Contact us today for boiler and furnace repair or maintenance in Vancouver.