house fire

Seven Avoidable Causes of House Fires

It’s a tragedy no one ever really sees coming, which makes it all the more devastating: a house fire. Even though they are almost always unexpected, the most common causes of them are actually often avoidable mistakes. By knowing about these causes, you can be more aware of the potential dangers, and help keep you and your family safe.


Although they are a lovely way to make a room feel cozier and smell more like home, candles can be dangerous when left unattended, especially when left close to flammable objects like curtains or books. As simple as it may seem, make sure to always blow out a candle before leaving a room!

Electrical equipment

Different appliances and electrical outlets can be a major threat if they are not used properly or are not in good condition. Frayed cords, overloaded outlets or extension cords, or even cords plugged into an outlet with the wrong voltage converter can result in an unexpected fire. To avoid this, make sure your electrical appliances are in good working condition and that your outlets are being used properly.


If you’ve ever touched a hot light bulb and immediately flinched away from the pain, you know how hot they can get. If lamp shades or light fittings are too close to these bulbs, there’s a chance they may catch flame, so make sure all of them in your home are an adequate distance from the bulb itself. This quick check could prevent a major fire.


As fun as it is to break out the barbecue and cook for friends and family, make sure you are doing so responsibly. Never use a BBQ close to your home or in your garage, and make sure there are no tablecloths, tree branches, paper products, or any other flammable object nearby that could start a fire. Additionally, make sure all of its parts are in good working condition, and that it’s clean when you use it.

Cooking equipment

On the note of cooking, many house fires start in the kitchen. Accidentally throwing a towel on a hot burner, or leaving pots and pans unattended can quickly start a fire that is difficult to put out. Always be attentive when cooking, and always remember to turn off cooking appliances when not in use.

Indoor smoking

This one should be a no-brainer, but is still worth mentioning. Ashes or cigarette butts can easily land on flammable objects inside, such as carpet, curtains, or blankets, and start a fire without you even noticing. If you are going to smoke, make sure to do it outside, and make sure that all your cigarette butts are completely put out before going back in.

Flammable liquids

Finally, be wary with flammable liquids, such as petrol or kerosene. Check their label to make sure you store them properly, and always keep them away from heat sources (and out of reach of children)! If you remember these simple tips, you may be able to prevent a major house fire.

Boston Board Up

Under the circumstance that a house fire does happen, do not hesitate to call Boston Board. Our 24/7 Emergency team will be there to help board up your house and limit the damage. Call (800) 949-9113 for more information.