As temperatures cool, officials give tips for safe space heater and fireplace use

Local News

BULLARD, Texas (KETK) – The first real fall cold front is moving through East Texas. Before powering up a space heater or lighting a fireplace, there are a few things to consider.

The first tip is to make sure your chimney is cleaned and inspected every year. Carbon deposits build up on the inside of the chimney and that causes two problems. First, the deposits are fuel so if they get too hot they could catch fire. If there’s too much build up, it can hinder the smoke from rising up and out of the chimney. The smoke could come back down into your home and cause a toxic environment.

The second tip is to choose your wood wisely.

“Hardwoods are probably the best thing to use, they burn longer and more efficiently,” said Bullard Fire Lieutenant Peter Riley. “Softer woods like pine burn really quick, really hot, and they produce a lot of smoke.”

The last tip is to make sure you have a carbon monoxide alarm with charged batteries at all times.

“The classic way of making your house feel homely during the holiday season is having a live fire in your house, but…..its very dangerous,” said Lieutenant Riley.

As far as space heater safety, you should keep anything flammable at least 3 feet away. Clothing, bedding, furniture and especially kids should not be anywhere near the heater.

Remember to always have a fire extinguisher in your home. They can help homeowners to greatly deescalate fires.

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