October is National Fire Prevention Month
During October, we celebrate the spooky and scary season. Horror movies are always on television, haunted houses pop up in the area, and local neighborhoods decorate their homes for Halloween.
What doesn’t get enough attention during this time of the year is fire prevention. The goal of Fire Prevention Month is to raise fire safety awareness and help ensure your home and family have a plan and ready for the unexpected. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) named the second week of October Fire Prevention Week to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.
Spooky Fire Statistics
Fire departments responded to an average of 44,880 home fires per year between 2012-2016 that involved electrical failures or malfunction. What’s more spooky is three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no working smoke alarms. Additionally, electrical malfunction continues to lead the cause of home fires year after year.
House fires cause extreme damage, injury, and in some cases, death. With this in mind, our electricians at Dream Team take the time to spread awareness about fire safety, especially when it comes to your electrical system in your home. Make the most out of National Fire Prevention Month. Set yourself and your home up for safety success.
Here are a few critical fire prevention steps to follow to ensure your safety:
1) Be Sure Your Home Has Working Smoke Detectors
One of the most important ways you can protect your home from a fire is to have multiple smoke detectors. There should be a WORKING smoke detector on every level of your home. Having multiple smoke detectors, you have ’round-the-clock’ protection that will alert you and your family of a fire.
Remember, two-thirds of fire-related deaths occur in homes where there are no smoke detectors. This is an easy fire prevention step you can take immediately.
2) Install an Arc Fault Breaker in Your Home
Do you have an arc fault breaker in your home?
If you’re not sure what an arc fault breaker is – simply put, its job is to detect dangerous electrical arcs and interrupt the circuit before it can start a fire. The difference between an arc fault breaker and a standard circuit breaker is a circuit breaker does not always trip to a quick surge. If you don’t have an arc fault breaker, especially if you have older wiring, there is a higher likelihood of arc fault fires.
3) Replace Faulty GFCI Outlets
The purpose of a GFCI outlet is to protect you from an electric shock. A GFCI monitors the amount of current flowing from hot to neutral. In the event of an imbalance, it trips the circuit. It can sense a mismatch as small as 4 or 5 milliamps, and it can react as quickly as one-thirtieth of a second. However, when a GFCI outlet fails, the device will continue to produce power, but it will no longer protect you.
To ensure you’re protected, it’s vital to stay on top of inspections and get faulty GFCI outlets replaced. Be sure to hire a licensed electrician to do the work.
4) Remove Knob and Tube Wiring
If you have an older home built in the late 1800s or early 1900s, you may have knob and tube wiring. This wiring type is considered extremely dangerous, mainly because there is no protection if a fault occurs because it has no ground wire. This can lead to shocks and fires. Therefore, it’s essential you replace this type of wiring if it still exists in your home today.
You can read more about the dangers of knob and tube wiring here.
Make the Season Less Spooky at Home with Fire Safety
At Dream Team, we take fire safety very seriously. We want to make sure that our customers and community know the dangers of fire and what you can do to protect yourself. Don’t wait until disaster strikes to find out about fire safety.
If you have any questions regarding potential electrical hazards at your home, please give our electricians a call. We want to keep you, your family, and home safe and protected from fire hazards.