These fire safety tips will help you prevent the risk of fires and injury caused by improper use and maintenance of wood stoves, furnaces and other heating elements.

Learn more about safe burning practices and fire permits required if you plan on having an open air burning or fire pit on your property.

Fire safety checklist for homeowners

Follow these tips to help prevent fires in your home and minimize damage when a fire starts:

  • Install smoke detectors and check them regularly to ensure they are working properly
  • Keep a fire extinguisher in a convenient location and make sure it works and you know how to use it
  • Plan an escape route in case of fire and rehearse your plan with family members
  • Ensure you have an easily accessible alternative exit if the first exit is blocked by fire
  • Never leave candles burning unattended and keep candles out of reach of children
  • Make sure that cigarettes are fully extinguished when finished smoking
  • Clean and inspect chimneys twice a year
  • Clean and inspect your furnaces annually
  • Ensure wood stoves are installed properly
  • Keep clothing and other flammable materials away from heating sources such as space and baseboard heaters
  • Store matches and lighters in a safe place away from children and sources of heat
  • Store firewood at least 30 feet from the home
  • Store flammable materials, liquids and solvents in metal containers, and keep them 30 feet away from the home
  • Keep brush surrounding your home to a minimum

Find other helpful fire prevention tips and checklists to make sure your home is safe.

Smoke detector safety tips

Smoke detectors are a key part of a home fire escape plan. When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast. Working smoke detectors save lives. Use the following checklist as a guide to ensure you and your family safely escapes your home in the event of a fire:

Installing smoke detectors

Follow these tips for installing smoke detectors in your home:

  • Use both ionization smoke detectors (which are quicker to warn about flaming fires) and photoelectric detectors (which are quicker to warn about smouldering fires).
  • Use interconnected smoke detectors so that when one sounds, the others go off as well.
  • Install smoke detectors inside and outside of each bedroom and sleeping area, on every level of the home including the basement.
  • Install extra smoke detectors if you have a large home.
  • Install smoke detectors either on the ceiling or high on a wall.
  • Install smoke detectors near the kitchen or at least 10 feet from the stove to reduce false alarms.

Testing and cleaning smoke detectors

Follow these tips for testing and cleaning your smoke detectors to keep them working properly:
  • Test all smoke detectors at least once a month to ensure they are working by pressing the test button and replace batteries when required.
  • Clean smoke detectors monthly.
  • There are other types of alarms such as strobe lights or bed shakers for those who are hard-of-hearing or deaf.
  • Replace all smoke detectors when they reach 10 years of age.

Safety tips for home heating

Follow these safety tips to prevent your home heating systems from causing fires.

Heating/furnace

Review these safety tips for heating and furnaces to help prevent fires in your home.

  • Clean and inspect your furnace annually and chimney twice a year.
  • Clean or replace your furnace filter three to four times a year to avoid heavy emissions of carbon monoxide and to prevent fires.
  • Furnaces that require lubrication on the motors and bearings should be checked by a qualified heating technician once a year.
  • Keep furniture a minimum of three feet from fireplaces, wall heaters, baseboards and space heaters.
  • Keep combustible items a minimum of six inches away from vents.
  • Do not plug space heaters into extension cords.
  • Ensure your heater is approved by a national testing laboratory and has an auto shut-off feature in the event it tips over or gets bumped.

Fireplace and wood stove

If you have a fireplace or working wood stove in your home, follow these safety tips to help prevent fires:

  • Do not burn green/moist wood, cardboard, milk cartons, or artificial logs (unless specifically manufactured for this purpose).
  • Do not use gasoline, charcoal starter fluid or other flammable liquids to start your fire.
  • Keep your wood stove burning by frequently adding smaller pieces of wood rather than infrequent large amounts of wood.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher in a central location known to all household members.
  • Place a smoke detector in the room where the wood stove is located and install a carbon monoxide detector in your bedroom.
  • Keep the area around the heating unit and flue clear.
  • When re-fueling, open the door slowly to prevent smoke spillage.
  • Children must be supervised at all times when wood stoves are in use.
  • Place ashes from fireplaces and barbecues outdoors in a covered metal container at least three feet from anything that can catch fire.
  • Never use a vacuum cleaner to remove ashes, allow it to cool thoroughly before disposing of it.

The WASP gutter mount sprinkler kit

Gutter Mounted Sprinkler

The WASP helps to keep your roof and surrounding areas wet with water to prevent wildfire embers lighting your house on fire. This fire preventative device can also be left on during an evacuation. It can be installed in minutes by simply mounting the WASP onto the rain gutter on your home's roof. The sprinkler kit is an affordable option that a homeowner can quickly install on their gutters when faced with a wildfire event. Learn more about the wildfire protection kit and how it can help save your home and keep you safe in the event of a wildfire.

Contact the fire prevention branch if you have any questions regarding the sprinkler kits by calling 780-532-9727 ext. 2106 or sending us an email.

Costs

The cost of the sprinkler kits is $155.00 plus GST. The kits can purchase at County of Grande Prairie Community Services building located at 10808 – 100 Avenue in Clairmont.