title:Preventing Fire Damage in the Living Room author:Jonathan Meyer source_url:http://www.articlecity.com/articles/home_improvement/article_1878.shtml date_saved:2007-07-25 12:30:13 category:home_improvement article:

Many of the common causes for fire damage in the living room can be easily prevented, given proper attention. The following safety rules will help assuring a safe environment in your living room, minimizing fire hazards to a minimum.
Electrical Devices
Start with checking outlets, sockets, and extension cord. Make sure that they are not overloaded. Never run extension cord under carpets and confirm that they are not looped over nails or other sharp objects that could cause them to fray. Lamps should be used with proper wattage bulbs. Keep adequate space around TVs and stereo equipment to allow air to free flow and cool these items down. It is very important that fuses in the plugs of your TV, and stereo are rated correctly.
Upholstered Furniture
Modern upholstered furniture are required be resistant to ignition from burning cigarettes and matches. Check the label to see when your upholstered furniture was manufactured. If it was manufactured before 1988, it is not fire-resistant and you must be more cautious
Smoking, Lighters and Matches
Keep matches and lighters away from kids and educate them that matches and lighters are dangerous and must be used very carefully. If you have kids, it is recommended to use childproof lighters and matchboxes. Do not leave burning cigarettes unwatched. They can fall onto combustible materials and develop into a serious fire. Be sure to put out smoking materials before you go to sleep. Conform that the contents of ashtrays are cold before you throw them to the trash. It is better to use solid and stable ashtrays, preferably made of non-combustible material. Ashtrays should be large, deep and frequently emptied.
Keep candles away from curtains, furniture, and anything else that can catch fire. Place candles away from open windows or where they are exposed to draughts. Use proper candleholders and make sure the candle fits firmly inside them. Minimize the option of fire even if a candle falls by leaving a clearance above and around it. Never leave candles unattended.
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