Candles create a charming atmosphere in our homes, but using them can be risky as open flames are potential fire hazards. According to the government of Canada, an average of 800 candle fires occur in Canada each year. Here are safety tips to keep in mind when using real candles in homes:
- Candles should be used in well-ventilated rooms. It’s also important to avoid burning too many candles in a small room where air exchange is limited.
- They must not be burned in rooms with vents, drafts, fans or air currents to avoid rapid, uneven burning, flame flare-ups, and soot formation.
- Lit candles should be kept at least 30 centimetres away from flammable objects, such as furniture, curtains, paper, plants, and electronics.
- When burning candles, they should be kept in sturdy candle holders that are placed on horizontal, stable, and heat-resistant surfaces.
- Lit candles must be kept at least 10 centimetres apart to ensure that they don’t melt one another.
- Candles should be kept out of the reach of children and pets.
- Rooms with lit candles have to be supervised at all times; candles must be extinguished when leaving the room or going to bed. Also, candles should not be used in bedrooms or other sleeping areas (most fires started by candles occur in the bedroom).
- Burning candles all the way down is to be avoided – candles should be put out when there are at least five centimetres of wax left or one centimetre if they are in a container.
- Candles should not be moved when they’re burning since wax can drip and cause injuries. Candles should be extinguished before moving them.
- Using candles during a power outage is dangerous. The risk of fire or injuries increases when using or handling candles in the dark. Using flashlights and battery-powered lighting is much safer.
- Water should not be used to put out a candle so as to prevent hot wax from splashing. Using a candle snuffer to extinguish them is a safer option.
- To eliminate the risk of fires caused by open flames, burning candles can be replaced with battery-operated flameless candles. Most electrical candles look and smell like real candles.
Although candles are potential fire hazards in homes and properties, cooking equipment is the leading cause of home fires. Here are tips to prevent kitchen fires. The PuroClean team stands ready to provide professional restoration services to any property affected by fire, water or mould damage.