Safeguard Your Home Against Wildfires

During long periods of drought, and especially in states like California and Oregon, wildfires are a very real danger. They can sweep into a neighborhood or country home and destroy everything in their path. If you live in an area where wildfires are a possibility, it is important that you safeguard your home.

(1) Maintain Your Yard

Regardless of how much vegetation surrounds your home, just about anything can be turned into kindling for a while fire. To safeguard your home, keep all bushes trimmed and mow your lawn once a week. Clear out any unwanted brush and weeds and avoid letting any plants become overgrown. Check and see if your community offers a pickup service for yard debris and bundle the weeds, branches and trees into tight balls with twine.

(2) Remove Leaves

Leaves are something about which many people forget, but they provide excellent fuel for wildfires. To safeguard your home, be sure to check all areas where leaves can begin to collect, such as the roof, rain gutters, yard and patio. Gather all leaves into large plastic bags and put them out for the trash. You should also make sure that small twigs are gathered as well.

(3) Avoid Tall Plants

Wherever possible, landscape your yard with low bushes, trees, flowers and vines because larger plants are easier to find and burn. Even though you might love those nine-foot-tall bushes, they are a series hazard for wildfires. If you must have tall plants, keep them at least fifteen feet away from your home.

(4) Use Spark Arresters

Because sparks from various equipment can start a fire just as easily as a campfire in the wilderness, purchase spark arresters to safeguard your lawn mowers, weed eaters, chainsaws and other equipment.

(5) Clear the Chimney

Large trees with branches that hang near your chimney are a fire hazard, as is anything else within ten feet of your home. Make time to trim the branches of tall trees so that they don’t create a path from the chimney.

(6) Maintain Your Property

If you have a large piece of property – more than two acres – you will need to think about every spare inch of it. It is an attractive tendency to avoid maintaining property that isn’t in immediate view of the house, but in order to safeguard against wildfires, you’ll want to eradicate any potential kindling. Purchase a large riding lawn mower to save the effort of pushing one through all of that grass.

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