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Using Your Fireplace or Stove During a Power Outage

One of the most common emergencies in our homes is losing power. At first, losing power is just an inconvenience, but if it lasts more than a few hours, it can become a more serious situation.

Using Your Fireplace or Stove During a Power Outage

Using Your Fireplace or Stove During a Power Outage

During the cold months, power outages can result in loss of heat, making it uncomfortable or even impossible to stay in our homes. When this happens, we appreciate our fireplaces and stoves more than ever. Here’s how to be prepared:

Wood-burning Hearth Products

  • If you have a wood pile and a wood-burning fireplace or stove, you’re in good shape to keep your house warm during a power outage.

Gas Fireplaces – Standing Pilot

  • If your gas fireplace has a standing pilot, it should light itself fine during a power outage since it doesn’t require electricity to activate the pilot flame. If you need to light it manually, consult your owner’s manual.

Gas Fireplaces – Intermittent Pilot Ignition

  • If your gas fireplace was manufactured recently, it may have an energy-saving intermittent pilot ignition system, which requires electricity to spark the pilot flame each time it’s used. Many models, like Heat & Glo gas fireplaces and inserts are outfitted with IntelliFire or IntelliFire Plus ignition systems, which have battery backup systems that can be used to light the pilot during a power outage. Generally, IntelliFire systems require two D cell batteries, and IntelliFire Plus systems require four AA batteries. If you have a remote control or a wall switch with a display, find the control box in the lower controls of the fireplace or behind the stove. There will be a switch that slides between ON, OFF and REMOTE – slide this to ON for the appliance to operate with the power off. If you have questions, consult your owner’s manual.

Pellet stoves and inserts

  • They require electricity to light the flame and many models are available with battery backup systems. Consult your owner’s manual to determine what size and how many batteries are needed. Also, keep in mind that sometimes power outages can cause power surges that may damage circuit boards and motors. For this reason, it’s a good idea to unplug your pellet stove during a storm, or plug it into a surge protector. Another option for lighting your stove is to plug it into a generator, if you have one.
  • Keep in mind that batteries should be used only in the event of a power outage, as battery longevity can be affected by the temperature of the appliance. So, remove the batteries when you’re not using them during a power outage.

Hearth products become great assets during power outages! If you have questions, please consult your owner’s manual or your local hearth dealer.

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Holiday Fire Safety

It may be the most wonderful time of the year, but it’s also the busiest time of year—for local firefighters. According to www.firesaftey.gov, fires during the holiday season injure as many as 1,650 Americans, causing more than $990 million in damages.

Holiday Fire Safety

From scented candles, Christmas trees, and fireplaces to lights and space heaters, it’s easy to see why fire prevention is so important during the holidays. That’s why www.firesaftey.gov (literally) spells out some prevention measures to make sure this holiday is a safe and merry one for you and your family.

Space heaters:

  • Place them at least three feet away from anything flammable.
  • Make sure an adult is in the room when heaters are on.
  • Turn them off when you leave the room or go to sleep.

Alarms:

  • Install at least one smoke alarm on each floor level of the home, including basements.
  • Test the alarms monthly, and be sure to change batteries at least once a year.

Fires:

  • Never burn unconventional items such as wrapping paper or boxes in the fireplace, as this could cause a chimney fire.
  • The same thinking applies to stoves and ovens—use these strictly for cooking, and not for heating.

Escape:

  • Plan a home escape with two ways out of each room.
  • Practice your exit plan with every member of the family to make sure it works.
  • Invest in fire extinguishers, and know how to use them.

Trees:

  • For artificial trees, only choose flame-retardant ones with a UL label.
  • Cut trees should be watered daily to be kept fresh.
  • Never use real candles on trees.
  • Keep trees at a safe distance from fireplaces, other sources of heat, and doorways.
  • Dispose of trees at an authorized recycling center.

Your lights:

  • Inspect lights for wear and tear, such as frayed wires or gaps in insulation.
  • Periodically check wires—they should not be warm to touch.
  • Connect strings to an extension cord before plugging in.

Fore more information, visit firesafety.gov. At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, our experienced team offers nothing less than outstanding customer service. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and competitive pricing. If there is anything we can help you with, please contact us at 913-764-4600 or complete the contact form. We look forward to working with you!

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Fireplace Safety Tips

Fireplace Safety Tips

Here are some helpful Fireplace Safety Tips from HealthyChildren.org

  • If possible, keep a window cracked open while the fire is burning.
  • Be certain the damper or flue is open before starting a fire. Keeping the damper or flue open until the fire is out will draw smoke out of the house. The damper can be checked by looking up into the chimney with a flashlight or mirror. Do not close the damper until the embers have completely stopped burning.
  • Use dry and well-aged wood. Wet or green wood causes more smoke and contributes to soot buildup in the chimney. Dried wood burns with less smoke and burns more evenly
  • Smaller pieces of wood placed on a grate burn faster and produce less smoke.
  • Clean out ashes from previous fires. Levels of ash at the base of the fireplace should be kept to 1 inch or less because a thicker layer restricts the air supply to logs, resulting in more smoke.
  • The chimney should be checked annually by a professional. Even if the chimney is not due for cleaning, it is important to check for animal nests or other blockages that could prevent smoke from escaping.
  • Make sure the area around the fireplace is clear of anything that is potentially flammable (ie: furniture, drapes, newspapers, books, etc.). If these items get too close to the fireplace, they could catch fire.
  • Never leave a fire in the fireplace unattended. Make sure it is completely out before going to bed or leaving the house. If you leave the room while the fire is burning or the fireplace is still hot, take your small child with you.
  • Minimize your child’s chance of burns from the hot glass front of some fireplaces. Safety screens can be installed to reduce the risk of burns.
  • Put fireplace tools and accessories out of a young child’s reach. Also, remove any lighters and matches.
  • Install both smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Test them monthly and change the batteries at least once a year.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher on hand.

Henges Insulation & Fireplaces has a comprehensive team of trained professionals with years of critical, hands-on experience.  Our team has undergone extensive training and regular re-certifications and will work with you to get the job done right.

At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, our experienced team offers nothing less than outstanding customer service. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and competitive pricing. If there is anything we can help you with, please contact us at 913-764-4600. We look forward to working with you!

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How To Clean A Fireplace

This helpful video about how to clean a fireplace will give you all the information you will need to get the job done, including materials needed and cleaning steps, in just two minutes.

How To Clean A Fireplace:

Here’s a handy summary of the materials you will need to clean your fireplace:

  • goggles
  • paper mask
  • old clothes
  • garbage pail
  • trash bags
  • drop cloths
  • whisk broom
  • shop vacuum
  • nylon scrub brush
  • warm water
  • 1 cup chlorine bleach
  • rubber gloves
  • large bucket
  • rags and towels
  • newspapers
  • glass cleaner
  • oven cleaner

Cleaning your fireplace is not only a matter of aesthetics. It’s also a matter of fire safety. Be sure to take all the necessary precautions to protect yourself from inhaling any soot or debris from the fireplace, too, as it is harmful to your health.

If you  have any questions about cleaning your fireplace, call Henges Insulation & Fireplaces in Kansas City. At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, our experienced team offers nothing less than outstanding customer service. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and competitive pricing. If there is anything we can help you with, please contact us at 913-764-4600. We look forward to working with you!

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6 Fireplace Safety Tips

The Home Safety Council has 6 fireplace safety tips worth repeating during this time of year. To prevent house fires and burns while operating your fireplace, remember these tips.

Fireplace Safety Tips

Fireplace Safety Tips:

  1. Burn only seasoned wood, not trash or other flammable items because those may emit poisonous or harmful fumes or ignite.
  2. Use UL-certified creosote logs to prevent the build-up of creosote in your chimney, which should be professionally inspected each year.
  3. Be sure your chimney flue (if applicable) is open before turning on your fireplace.
  4. Keep embers contained with glass doors or a fireplace screen.
  5. Install and make sure smoke detectors are working inside each level of your home, especially near sleeping areas.
  6. To avoid burns, don’t let children play near working fireplaces or wood stoves.

At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, our experienced team offers nothing less than outstanding customer service. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and competitive pricing. If there is anything we can help you with, please contact us at 913-764-4600 or complete the contact form. We look forward to working with you!

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Fireplace Safety and Maintenance Tips

Get ready for cooler weather now by making sure you know how to safely operate and maintain your wood stove or fireplace insert. Here are some fireplace safety and maintenance tips for wood-burning fireplaces, fireplace inserts, and stoves:

Wood Stove and Fireplace Safety and Maintenance

  • Remove and dispose of ashes carefully.
  • Clean the glass door.
  • Replace the stove door gasket.
  • Get your chimney cleaned.
  • Replace catalytic combuster.
  • Use stove accessories.

Watch this video for more details about these fireplace safety and maintenance tips:

Read up on responsible wood-burning, and find out how to clean your fireplace.

We carry a large variety of fireplaces (direct vent, B-vent, wood burning, outdoor and electric) and wood burning stoves to suit any building or home. We professionally install Majestic fireplaces, Vermont Castings fireplaces and stoves, and Country Flame flex fuel stoves and wood burning fireplaces. We look forward to helping you choose a hearth product that meets your needs and preferences.

At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, our experienced team offers nothing less than outstanding customer service. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and competitive pricing. If there is anything we can help you with, please contact us at 913-764-4600 or complete the contact form. We look forward to working with you!

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Fire safety – fireplaces and space heaters

We know it can get awfully chilly during the winter, especially in older homes. The use of alternative heating sources, such as fireplaces and space heaters, is growing quite popular in the U.S. as a means to offset high home heating costs and to increase homes’ comfort. The problem is, misuse and incorrect installation is predicted to spur a corresponding increase in the incidence of fires. According to firesafety.gov, fire departments responded to 412,500 home fires in the U.S. in 2006, which claimed the lives of 2,620 people and injured another 12,925, not including firefighters. We sure don’t want to see this number rise!

It’s terribly important to have a functioning smoke detector that is less than 10 years old and equipped with fresh batteries. You should have an escape plan and practice fire safety in every room. In addition, be sure to follow these few, critical safety tips:

With wood stoves and fireplaces:

–       Inspect and clean chimneys at least annually (sap residue in the chimney can ignite).

–       Don’t burn paper, trash or green wood. Paper burns at a higher temperature than wood, putting off more heat than chimneys are designed for.

–       Keep combustible objects at least three feet away.

–       Inspect for damage or obstructions at least monthly.

With space heaters:

–       Only use units with the UL (Underwriter’s Laboratories Inc.) listing and approval.

–       Do not plug any unit into an extension cord; only directly into an outlet.

–       Unplug when not in use.

–       Don’t leave on while you sleep.

–       Don’t store or dry anything on top of the heater.

–       Ensure anything combustible is at least three feet from heater.

NEVER use your kitchen stoves to heat your home! Leaving the door open for any period of time will overwork the coil, causing it to overheat and creating a huge fire risk.

For more helpful information about how to prevent a fire, visit .

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