Portable ethanol fireplaces and portable generators have become very popular over the past few years. The portable fireplaces provide ambiance and a little warmth to a room or outdoor space. A portable generator comes in handy if there are power outages due to downed wires, blackouts, summer or winter storms, and other emergencies. The generators provide a temporary solution for power when it is most needed, but most people do not know how to use them correctly. These portable units have their own specific safety needs and safety concerns that need to be addressed to keep your family and home safe from a fire emergency. Heating equipment fires are the leading cause of home fire deaths. Nearly ½ of home heating equipment fires are during the coldest months of the year, December, January, and February. With the coldest part of winter soon arriving, AKE Safety Equipment wants to keep your family safe when using portable fireplaces and generators with the safety tips listed below:
Portable Ethanol Fireplaces Safety Tips
- Store ethanol fuel in a closed container away from fire or flammable sources and out of reach of children.
- Based on the manufacturer’s instructions, only use the fuel made specifically for the type of portable fireplace that you have.
- Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the fireplace.
- Only adults should be in charge of maintaining and filling the fireplace.
- Clean up any fireplace fuel spillage and make sure all liquid has evaporated before lighting the fireplace.
- Light the fireplace with a utility lighter or a long match. Keep matches and lighters out of reach of children and in a locked cabinet.
- Do NOT move a lit fireplace or move the fireplace while it is still hot.
- Allow the fireplace to cool down for at least 15 minutes before refueling.
- Do not pour ethanol fuel in a device that is lit or not completely cooled. It could result in a fire or an injury.
- Extinguish the flame on the fireplace when you leave the room, leave your home, or go to sleep.
Portable Generator Safety Tips
- The biggest dangers associated with a portable generator are carbon monoxide poisoning, electrical shock or electrocution, and fire hazards.
- Appliances should be plugged directly into the generator or a heavy-duty, outdoor-rated extension cord. Check the cords for cuts and tears and make sure that the plugs have all 3 prongs.
- Use the generator in well-ventilated locations OUTSIDE. Do not use near doors, windows, or vent openings. Never use a generator in an attached garage, even if the door is open for air circulation. Open windows and doors while using the generator. Note: a fan will not prevent carbon monoxide build-up in your home.
- Turn off generators and let them cool down before refueling. Never refuel a generator while it is hot as it could cause burns to the user.
- Store fuel for the generator in a container that is labeled that it is intended for fuel only. Store the fuel outside away from living areas.
- Install carbon monoxide alarms and detectors in your home as an added safety precaution.
- Do not use a portable generator in the rain. Keep the generator dry to prevent electrocution. Operate the generator on a dry surface under an open, canopy-like, structure.
- Do not attach a generator to home wiring as this can cause fires.