Baltimore Fire Safety

Renovate an antiquated and faulty laundry with these safety tips.

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Eileen and Keith Tishken are concerned that their 1955 contemporary in Baltimore is a health hazard. What will it take to make the house safe for their growing family? To find out, they call in home inspector Reggie Marston, a veteran of some 5,000 home inspections.

Inspector's Notebook
When it comes to home projects, there are none more important than those dealing with fire safety. Smoke detectors are easy to install, inexpensive and required by local building codes. But even with all the codes and regulations, there are plenty of hidden fire dangers lurking around the house.

In this case, look at the clothes dryer. If it’s vented properly to the outside it’s safe. But the one in Baltimore, Md., was not vented outside. Instead, lint was piling up inside the house creating a fire hazard, not to mention numerous health risks as well. All it takes is a single spark to ignite the lint. That’s why it’s important to be up to date on your home’s fire safety, particularly in your laundry room or area.

Use a metal vent hose to connect the dryer to an outside vent. A plastic hose can melt and cause a fire. Plastic hoses do not meet local codes in many states. Check for any obstructions in the hose several times a year. And remember to keep a fire extinguisher in the laundry room just in case.

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