This blog will go over tips and maintenance ideas from Home Inspectors and for home owners in the Houston area.
The aim of this article is actually twofold. To begin with, at InterNACHI, we’d like you to make strategies to keep your garage free of fire. Fortunately, there are tactics that can be done, many of which are explained below. Secondly, garage fires will occur, and we’d like you to make sure that a fire cannot not easily spread to the rest of your house. While one can perform many of the recommendations in this post yourself, it's really a great idea to work with an InterNACHI inspector to make sure your house is safe from a garage fire.
Why do countless garages create a fire hazard?
Where are you most likely to perform most welding, or any work on your car? These actions require working with all sorts of flammable materials.
Hot-water systems as well as boilers are often stored in garages, and they could produce sparks that could perhaps ignite fumes or liquids. Car batteries, too, will spark in certain circumstances.
Engine oil as well as fuel can leak from vehicles. These liquids might gather unnoticed and eventually ignite, given the proper conditions.
Combustible liquids, such as gas, motor oil and paint are commonly kept in garages. A few different examples are brake fluid, varnish, paint thinner and lighter fluid.
The following tips will help prevent garage fires as well as their spread:
If the garage permits access to the attic, make sure a hatch protects this access.
The walls and the ceiling should always be fire-rated. Regrettably, it might be difficult for inexperienced homeowners to tell if their walls are Type X fire-rated sheetrock. An InterNACHI inspector can examine the walls and ceiling to make sure they are adequate flame barriers.
The flooring should be devoid of clutter. Loose papers, matches, greasy towels, and other possibly flammable items are very dangerous if they are strewn about the garage area.
Use light bulbs with the correct wattage, and do not overload electrical outlets.
Tape down every cord and wire so they aren't distorted or perhaps unintentionally yanked.
If there's a door that leads the garage from the living area, take into account the following:
Do not install a pet door through the entry! Fires can more easily spread into the liveable space through the pet door, particularly if it’s made of plastic.
Does the door have a window? An InterNACHI inspector can inspect the window to tell if it's fire-rated.
The door should be self-closing. Although it may be inconvenient, especially while carrying groceries into the home from the car or truck, doors should always be self-closing. One never knows when a fire could happen, and it is going to be unfortunate to accidentally leave the door open while a fire is beginning in the garage.
Inspect the joints and open areas all around the doorway. Is it tightly sealed? Any cracks whatsoever can allow dangerous fumes, such as carbon monoxide or fuel vapour, to enter the living area. An InterNACHI inspector can suggest methods to seal the door so that fumes are unable to enter the living area.
Regarding items laid on the floors, you can check for the following:
Store your combustible fluids in clearly labeled, self-closing canisters, and only in limited quantities. Always keep them clear of heating units, appliances, pilot lights and other sources of heat and flame.
Never keep propane gas tanks indoors. Once they catch fire, they're able to explode. Propane tanks are sturdy enough to be stored outdoors.
To sum things up, there are plenty of methods that you can complete to avoid garage fires from spreading to the other parts of the house, or to prevent them from beginning to start with. Nevertheless, it is highly recommended that you have your garage periodically examined by an InterNACHI inspector.
From Attached Garage Fire Hazards - InterNACHI http://www.nachi.org/garage-fires-client.htm#ixzz2nk5fNwz1