Ask the Inspector: What fire dangers and safety issues lurk?


If you’re a homeowner, renter or a landlord, you may find yourself asking, ‘what are the potential safety issues I need to be aware of?’

Although any home can be made to look desirable and charming, they also come with some real safety issues. This article describes some of the common safety risks that can be lurking – especially fire-safety as October is Fire-Prevention month.

How do we know? We also are homeowners with families that obviously need to be kept safe!

In addition, many times we have provided a Safety-Check for those either worried or have been asked by the insurance provider to show them the home is safe.  It can be a real eye-opener when a home is checked with fresh eyes and extensive knowledge!

Just recently, we checked a home for a family beginning to worry, since they had inherited it, and weren’t familiar with owning a house, since they had been living in an apartment.

Needless to say, we found numerous issues that could have caused a fire or other potential dangerous situations:

  • Plastic dryer duct laying right across the metal vent-connector for the boiler (very hot), unprotected electrical cables laying across very hot piping and old smoke alarms long-overdue for updating
  • No carbon monoxide detectors
  • Combustible materials stored in the basement near the gas-fueled water heater
  • Walk-through door to the home in an attached garage not properly and reliably closing against intact weather stripping and not protecting against exhaust fumes seeping into the living space
  • Broken light switch and outlet covers
  • Permanent extension cords being used to power anything too far from an available outlet
  • No fire-extinguisher on-hand
  • Dryer duct not cleaned of accumulated lint
  • Combustibles stored close to the exterior of the home
  • Three-prong power cords plugged into a two-wire outlet with the ground prong removed due to the age of the home

For more information, please contact us and we can help you make an important and informed decision that can save you money and perhaps even lower your insurance premium.

Glenn Duxbury

About Glenn Duxbury

Duxbury & Associates Building Inspection and Consulting Ltd. has received the 2004 Douglas College Entrepreneur of the Year Award in the ‘Consulting’ category for persistence and pursuit of excellent service delivery to clients by providing very thorough and professional Inspection Reports and dedication to those involved in buying / selling / building / renovating and maintaining uncompromised customer focus.