‘Tis the season for a crackling fire in the fireplace. It’s also the season when the most house fires occur – due to fireplace misuse, candles, space heaters, etc. If you have a gas fireplace installed in your home, it is critical that you use it properly – especially if you have children and pets around.
Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. Access the owner’s manual for your fireplace in your Homeowner Maintenance Guide. Maintain it per the manufacturer’s instructions, and make sure to take precautions where warnings are included! Above all, use common sense.
Do not try to manually light your fireplace with matches or a lighter. This is very dangerous! If you have followed the manufacturer’s instructions to light your fireplace and still can’t get it to work properly, call the manufacturer’s customer service line or contact a professional to troubleshoot the problem.
Don’t place combustibles or flammable items near your fireplace. It’s tempting to decorate your hearth with pretty things. But keep in mind that the heat from your fireplace can damage items placed too close, and in the worst case, cause combustible items to, well, combust.
Handle the glass carefully. Whether your unit has fixed glass or doors that open, it will get hot! Do not try to perform maintenance until the glass and entire unit has cooled completely.
Be safe and enjoy your fireplace this winter!