As you may have noticed, this summer brought far fewer forest fires than the past few years. Only 18 fires broke out across the state this past summer, which was significantly lower than the almost 1,800 fires in 2018. But with fewer fires, sources of fuel continue to build up strengthening the possibility of a fire filled 2020 summer. Here are some ways to protect your home from wildfires in the offseason so you’re prepared for a heavy fire season in the future.
How to Protect Your Home From Wildfires in the Offseason
Dual pane windows without tempered glass don’t protect as well in active fire conditions. Make sure to upgrade your windows using tempered glass for wildfire resistance and energy efficiency. The goal is to harden a home from wildfire and using at least one pane of tempered glass on the outside of dual pane windows is a good way to protect your home.
While fences are great additions to homes for the privacy, a wood fence that connects directly to a home can act as a wick and draw a fire directly to your home. Insert a metal shield where the fence meets your siding, so the flames don’t ignite combustible siding. Some people go as far as attaching a metal gate in between the fences and the siding. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to check your fences for broken wood pieces hanging off the fences as that can also attract flames to your home.
Covering vents with mesh is one of the best ways to protect your home from wildfires in the offseason. Adding mesh screens to vents can cause a barrier for embers, slowing down the amount of time a fire can invade your home. Embers cause a majority of home ignitions, so it’s important to take precautions to protect your home from embers.
If a fire is in the area
Wildfires are dangerous for those involved but also affect those who are miles away. If a fire in in your area, keep an eye on local air quality reports and visibility guides. Avoid unnecessary outdoor activities and consider stocking up on groceries while you’re out so you don’t need to take multiple trips outside. Close all windows to your home to keep the inside air as clean as possible. IF you have asthma, consult your doctor to get further guidance if a wildfire is in the area. Wildfires are inevitable, so it’s important that you become educated on steps you can take to lessen the effects on your home.
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