The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA) hopes you’ll have an enjoyable and safe holiday and winter season. So, to make certain your
hearth is safe, HPBA makes the following recommendations:

  • Make certain that the damper is open and the chimney is clear prior to lighting a wood, pellet, or gas fire.
  • All chimneys should have a rain cap and spark arrester to prevent roof fires.
  • Always have a sturdy tool set close to the fire for tending.
  • Keep matches and lighters hidden from small children.
  • Have either a glass or close-mesh screen in front of a wood burning fire to contain sparks.
  • Place furniture and your Christmas tree at least four feet away from the fireplace.
  • Any decoration or stockings should hang at the sides of the mantle.
  • For the sake of the environment and possible floating sparks, never burn wrapping paper or other items in your hearth.
  • Always watch young children when a fire is going. Fire is very attractive.
  • Teach your children to leave the fireplace tending to you.
  • Check your smoke detectors for fresh batteries regularly.
  • Always follow any instructions given by your hearth products manufacturers.

The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA) wishes everyone a happy barbecue season. To make certain your barbecue is safe, HPBA makes the following safety recommendations:

  • If bringing the barbecue out of winter storage, be sure it’s on a stable base to prevent it from tipping.
  • If your barbecue is gas, check the tubes that lead into the burner for any blockage from insects or old grease. Clean with pipe cleaner.
  • Check gas grill hoses for cracking, brittleness or leaks.
  • Avoid putting the grill under low hanging trees or patio covers. Never use a grill indoors. Use at least 10 feet from house, garage and carport.
  • If using charcoal, never add fluid after the grill has already been lit. And, after the unit has been lit, be certain the starter fluid container is tightly closed and that matches or lighters are stored well away from flame and a child’s reach. Never use gasoline to start
    a charcoal fire.
  • Don’t permit children to play near the barbecue when in use. The unit is deceiving because a child may think only the inside is hot. Never leave a barbecue unsupervised.
  • Avoid wearing loose-fitting clothing which may come in contact with flames.
  • Remember to keep a bucket of water, garden hose or fire extinguisher nearby to douse out-of-control flames.
  • Always let coals cool overnight before disposing of them.
  • Never store propane tanks in your home or attached garage.
  • When using a natural or propane gas barbecue, be sure all connections are tight. Before using your barbecue for first time each season, check all connections for leaks using a soapy water solution.
  • Always carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions for lighting and using your barbecue.