Jonesboro emergency officials offer tips for proper home heating

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The Jonesboro E911 Department has released some safety tips when it comes to heating your home during the extreme cold.

Those tips include:

  • Make sure you have a working smoke alarm
  • Never leave children unattended in a room with a space heater
  • Keep all combustible materials, including yourself at least 3 feet from the heater
  • Open face heaters should have a screen 
  • Provide ventilation to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning 
  • Vented Gas / Fired Heating Appliances Tips:

  • Central heating units, floor furnaces, recessed wall heaters, and vented space heaters
  • Inspect annually by a qualified service technician
  • Do not use these type units without a proper vent pipe. Vent pipes must exhaust to the outside
  • If your flame is not blue, it is not burning properly. It is producing carbon monoxide,which can't be seen, smelled or tasted. Turn it off.
  • Use flexible metal tubing with threaded ends to connect the heater to the gas valve. There should be a cutoff valve for the heater at the wall
  • Never use a rubber hose to connect a space heater to the gas valve
  • Use soapy water to check all connections and valves for leaks.
  • NEVER use a match to test for a gas leak 
  • Look for the American Gas Association label and follow the manufacturer's recommendations for proper usage
  • Electric Heaters Tips: 

  • Never overload outlets or breakers
  • Don't use extension cords for the heater. If the cord is hot to the touch, turn off the heater and unplug it
  • Electric heaters permanently installed in the wall or ceiling should have lint and dust removed regularly. Lint and dust will burn
  • Fireplace safety from the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA):

  • Creosote - a sticky, oily, combustible substance created when wood does not burn completely - rises into the chimney as a liquid and deposits on the chimney walls, and plays a role in nearly one-fourth (23%) of all home heating fires each year
  • Just like a space heater, keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from a fireplace, and create a three-foot "kid-free zone" around open fires
  • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room 
  • Never leave a fireplace fire unattended, particularly when children are present
  • Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container, and kept at a safe distance from your home
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