According to a RE/MAX Renovation Investment Report last year, more than half of Canadians renovated their home in 2020 with the intention of living in it. Twenty-nine per cent renovating to enhance their lifestyle for non-essential reasons (aesthetic and/or recreational purposes) and 29 per cent doing so for essential reasons (safety and maintenance). Only 16 per cent of Canadians said they renovated to increase the market value of their home in order to sell within in the next one to three years.
Fire pits: Lifestyle first
If you are using a fire pit in your backyard, it is essential to follow some safety guidelines to ensure everyone stays safe. The National Fire Protection Association has estimated 8,600 home fires involving grills, hibachis, or smokers each year.
That’s why you need to ensure safety on the basis of priority. Here are 10 safety tips to keep in mind when using your fire pit:
Find a suitable place
You need to find an even surface while choosing where to set up. The surface must not be made of combustible material that can easily catch fire.
Also, look for an open area with no tree branches overhead. Your patio roof should also be far enough away that it won’t catch on fire if sparks fly.
Be aware of the weather
Avoid all flammable things
Fire pits: Only use seasoned, dried wood
Greenwood or particles like green leaves, bark, etc., will cause a lot of smoke and improper burning. That could end up causing you breathing difficulties and other physical discomforts. So never put anything except well-dried wood into your pit.
However, you can use smokeless fire pits. This type of fire pit uses wood as a fuel but doesn’t produce smoke.
Keep an extinguisher nearby
Use a fire pit mat
Keep children and pets away
Keep your child and pets away from the area. Arrange restrictions like fire pit screens and fire gates around the fire pit. And always be around your kids.
Arrange seater in a safe distance
Another thing to keep in mind is the size of the fire pit. Ensure that you have enough room for people to sit around it comfortably. If you have a large fire pit, you may want to consider putting a fence around it so that people don’t accidentally step too close and get burned.
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Fire pits: Never leave a fire unattended
It is always best to keep an eye on your fire pit for these reasons. If you need to leave the area for any reason, make sure to put out the flames entirely first. This will help ensure that everyone stays safe and that your fire pit does not get out of control.
Then, use a brush to clean off any ashes or debris. Be sure to do this after every use in order to avoid any potential fires.
Other maintenance tips
- After extinguishing the fire, clean the pit as soon as possible. The best way is to clean it after every use. This will help prevent the build-up of ashes and soot, which can be challenging to remove.
- Try to use a wire brush to scrub the surface of the fire pit. This will help remove any built-up residue or dirt.
- If there is any build-up inside the pit, use a metal scraper to scrape it away.
- Always keep your fire pit clean. A dirty or defective fire pit is more prone to accidents.
- Store your fire pit in safe storage when not in use.
Ensure you have a fire extinguisher on hand and that the area is clear of flammable materials. Keep an eye on the fire, and never leave it unattended. Have a great time around the fire pit!
Kathy Koch is an author at Fireplace Fact and a sustainable interior designer who is always looking for ways to create something new, exciting and refreshing.