Steps to Take to Protect Your Home From Wildfire Damages
If you live in an area that might be in danger of wildfires, it is important to know how to protect your home. Wildfire damage can be catastrophic, but there are a few steps you can take to protect your home. Listed below are five effective steps for safeguarding your home against fire damage. If a fire damages your property, reach out to an Oregon wildfire lawyer at Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC for assistance with your case.
Start at the Top
When wildfires blaze, wind can be an issue. Often, embers travel through the air only to land on the roofs of houses and other buildings. A burning ember on a roof made of flammable materials can destroy your home. The most proactive step you can take to avoid wildfire damage is to construct your roof from materials that are flame-retardant. Listed below are some safer roofing materials:
- Asphalt shingles
- Metal roofs
- Tile roofs
Though wood shingles are very flammable, homeowners may not want to go to the financial lengths or the aggravation of redoing their wooden roofs. The addition of a fire retardant treatment or the installation of a rooftop sprinkler can be very helpful.
Another tip for making your roof less dangerous is to keep your gutters clean. Dried leaves and pine needles can easily catch fire, even on a less flammable type of roof. It is best to keep those clean and out of the way.
Embers Must Stay On the Outside
Most houses are chock full of flammable materials. If embers blow into your home, there are many materials that could easily catch fire. This means that keeping your home safe from a wildfire means keeping the embers from blowing into your house.
Listed below are a few tips for keeping the embers out of your house:
- Exterior vent openings should be covered. An excellent way to do this is to use ⅛ inch hardware cloth.
- Close and seal your doggy door and keep it that way during wildfire season.
- Caulk cracks and replaces tiles or shingles so that the rooftop is free of openings.
- Double-paned windows and tempered glass withstand higher temperatures best.
Safeguard Your Boundary
Securing the perimeter of your home is another way to keep your home safe from flames. When taking safety measures, start five feet from your home and go all the way around your house. Things within this zone may as well be attached to your house.
You will want to consider what you have close to the house. With some advance preparation, you may be able to diminish the risks of wildfire around your home. Some of the following items might be better off removed or moved at least 30 feet from your home for safety purposes:
- Propane tanks
- Building materials
- Mulch or pine straw lining the home’s landscaping
- Plants with oils and resins, such as pine or juniper plants
- Any dead or dry plant materials.
- Wooden decking
It is crucial to keep plants watered properly so they are less flammable. Another good idea is to replace your mulch or pine straw with gravel or stone mulch if it is close to your house. Make sure your decks are debris-free and that any vegetation beneath them is cleaned out and removed.
Making Your Space Easy to Defend
If a wildfire is burning hot enough, the radiant heat can cause a home to catch on fire, even if it is 100 feet away. If there are flammable or combustible materials between the house and a 100-foot perimeter, things can quickly escalate. Your line of defense between a wildfire and safety is the area that lies 30 to 100 feet from your house.
Keeping that area clear of field sources and plants with low-growing branches or those that are not watered regularly can protect your home from the destruction of a wildfire.
Wildfires Can Have an Enormous Impact
If you or a loved one has been impacted by a wildfire, you probably need legal advice. Reach out to Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC if you have questions or need advice following a wildfire. We are here to ensure you and your belongings are protected.