October is here! It’s a long-awaited time for many as it means tons of fun-filled fall activities and Halloween festivities. But let’s not forget that the month of October also ushers in National Fire Prevention Month, a tribute that originated as a week dedicated to remembering The Great Chicago Fire of 1871. Today it currently spans the entirety of the whole month. The mission is clear: to elevate awareness about fire safety. This is due to the fact that around 358,500 house fires occur annually in the United States. Yet, the astonishing truth is that the majority of these fires could be thwarted through the application of simple, routine maintenance. With no time to waste, we invite you to join your favorite team at Xenia Heating & Air in helping to kindle awareness about fire safety with all things HVAC-related. 

Common HVAC Fire Hazards: 

Let’s begin by emphasizing that your HVAC system, in its essence, poses no inherent danger. However, as with any machinery, negligence or neglect can sow the seeds of significant problems resulting in potentially hazardous situations. So, let’s first familiarize ourselves with the most common fire hazards linked to HVAC systems: 

1. Electrical Issues: Among the most prevalent causes of HVAC-related fires are electrical malfunctions. When first acquiring a home, sometimes the complete history of the HVAC unit is not always available. Over time, these units mature, deteriorate, or become obsolete, giving rise to electrical troubles rooted in aging wiring and circuits. It happens; with time, technology becomes outdated. It’s for this reason that regular maintenance is crucial. So, if you cannot recall the last time each of your units was serviced, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. Regular maintenance still stands as the ultimate form of preventative maintenance to keep hazardous circumstances at bay. 

2. Clutter Surrounding Units: In certain cases, HVAC units inhabit garages or basements, which are areas that often double as storage spaces. Accumulations of boxes, paint cans, chemicals, and other flammable items frequently are stored near these units. Of course, such clutter has been substantiated as a fire hazard. Therefore, it is important to maintain clear spaces around HVAC units to facilitate unimpeded airflow.  

3. Inadequate Installation: Poorly installed HVAC units may remain unnoticed for years without periodic inspections. This is why collaborating with a licensed HVAC company equipped with certified technicians for installations is a necessity. Additionally, as mentioned scheduling your regular maintenance checks is also imperative as these checks can help identify any potential issues before they arise. 

Fire Safety Insights from Your Xenia Heating & Air Experts: 

  • Craft an Escape Plan: Craft a comprehensive escape plan, ensuring that every member of your family, including children, is familiar with it. You should also designate a well-known outdoor meeting point away from the house to serve as a rallying point in the event of a fire. 
  • Carbon Monoxide & Gas Detection: Bolster safety by installing a Carbon Monoxide & Explosive Gas Detector in your home. These versatile alarms are adept at detecting carbon monoxide as well as natural gases like methane and propane. 
  • Smoke Detectors: We all know the importance of having smoke detectors in our homes, but it’s also just as important to have them on every level of your home. On top of that, if possible, they should be situated in sleeping quarters, such as in hallways.  
  • Regular Detector Testing: Test your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors once a month and stay vigilant regarding battery replacements (at least once a year). 
  • Monitor Expiry Dates: Smoke alarms have finite lifespans. Try checking the manufacture date on the back of your detectors and replace them about ten years from that date. You don’t want to wait until a smoke detector has completely died on you, as it may go unmissed for quite a while and before it’s too late. 
  • Fire Extinguishers: Keep a fire extinguisher on each level of your home, conveniently located for swift accessibility. 
  • Closed Bedroom Doors: Experts emphasize the highly recommended practice of keeping bedroom doors securely closed during the nighttime. This measure has been proven to slow the spread of fire and save lives. 

At Xenia Heating & Air, we prioritize your family’s safety. Consistent, annual maintenance is the foundation of ensuring that your HVAC system aligns with current safety standards and operates seamlessly. Feel free to contact us regarding our Whole Home Protection Plan, a comprehensive plan curated to help maintain and protect your HVAC system and home. With Xenia Heating & Air, you can count on us! 

Call us today at (937) 708-8451, or schedule an appointment online now by clicking here!