Phoenix Fire Department warns of home heating system dangers as the weather turns cold

PHOENIX - With rain and wind in the forecast, many folks in the Valley will turn on the heat for the first time this weekend.

But they might not realize heating equipment is a leading cause of home fires during the winter.

Phoenix fire Capt. Jonathan Jacobs, said it's important to check gas and electric heating equipment now, before temperatures drop, because it hasn't been used in a year and could be damaged.

Faulty wires can spark house fires, or gas leaks can cause carbon monoxide poisoning.

He said a dirty chimney or wood and coal stove could be dangerous if not cleaned and inspected yearly.

Jacobs said when it does get cold, never bring outdoor heaters inside.

He said folks who cannot afford to heat their homes often use camping stoves, patio heaters or grills instead.

But they release carbon monoxide , an odorless, colorless, deadly gas that he called a silent killer.

He said every home should have a carbon monoxide detector, along with a fire detector.

If a home has two levels, it needs a detector for each floor.

ABC15 talked to a Valley hardware store worker who said carbon monoxide detectors cost around $35-$40.

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