A backup heating source can be a wonderful solution to keeping warm in winter. There are drawbacks, however. There can be danger involved so it is imperative that you learn how to operate it safely before an emergency occurs and always keep your fire extinguisher handy. The tips that follow are only reminders. Be sure that you follow manufacturers’ directions exactly so you can enjoy the benefits without the hazards.
Never use one without a screen, be sure your chimney is free of the flammable creosote that builds up from wood smoke, handle ashes carefully, and never allow children to play unattended near the fireplace or any other heating source.
Wood / Coal Stoves
More efficient than fireplaces but they must be properly installed and connected to a suitable chimney or flue. Check local building and fire regulations for installation requirements.
Fuel Burning Heaters
Use only as directed and only in areas with proper ventilation. Suffocation can occur when fuel burning heaters are used improperly or in poorly ventilated areas.
Locate the generator in a well ventilated area, preferably outside your home. Gasoline powered generators can produce carbon monoxide, which can be deadly. Plug appliances directly into the generator. Use extension cords if necessary, but do not exceed the recommended wattage noted on the generator. Never connect the generator to your home’s main wiring circuit. Disconnect your home from the power system before hooking up a generator. Failure to do so can cause electricity to flow backwards into the power lines, endangering neighbors and the linemen who are working to restore power. If in doubt, contact a licensed electrician or Murfreesboro Electric Department.
• This guide from MED:
• Flashlights and batteries
• Glow-in-the-dark sticks
• A lantern
• Wind-up clock
• Portable radio
• Mylar blanket
• Can opener
Downed power lines are extremely dangerous. Stay at least 20 feet away from any downed lines