How to fire harden your home.
Prepare your home
How do you harden your home against fire?
A wildfire doesn’t have to reach your home to damage it. Drifting embers are the cause of 90% of destroyed homes in a wildfire and can travel several miles before landing and igniting a new fire on or near your property. However, wildfire home hardening techniques can help increase your home’s survivability and fire resistance, especially against drifting embers.
The free Frontline app provides fire hardening checklists and helps you keep track of which items you have completed. Download the app today to fire harden your home.
Prepare Home Ignition Zone zero (HIZ0).
Home ignition zone zero is defined as the actual structure of your home and the space that extends five feet from the exterior walls of your house. This is the most important area to focus on when preparing your home for wildfire as this is often the space where embers are able to land and ignite. The good news is that there are clear steps you can take to help fireproof your home from wildfire.
Re-imagining home hardening.
Historically, preparing your home for wildfire has meant taking actions to remove or reduce the presence of flammable material on or immediately around your home by using fire-resistant building materials or simply removing anything that might burn. This can be thought of as passive home hardening. A Frontline exterior sprinkler system begins to re-imagine home hardening by providing active home protection. With Frontline, you can have firefighter level protection for your home, without having to put firefighters in harm’s way.
Contact us today to take your home fire hardening to the next level.
Four simple steps to prepare your home for wildfire.
Preparing your home for wildfire can feel overwhelming and expensive. However, the four actions below can typically be done quickly and at a relatively low cost. You may be able to do these home fire hardening projects yourself or with the assistance of a local handyman or home fire preparation company.
Debris such as leaves and pine needles can accumulate in your gutters and become dry and brittle over time. This provides an environment that can quickly ignite when exposed to embers from a wildfire. Cleaning your gutters is a simple but important step in protecting your home from wildfire. Hire a professional if you need assistance or if you are uncomfortable using a ladder to access your gutters.
Embers can pass through attic, eave, and basement vents and ignite a fire inside your house. To prevent this you can add a wire mesh screening over the vents that is no more than one-eighth of an inch. There are also companies that offer replacement vents specifically manufactured to protect your home against ember ignition and can be used to retrofit your existing attic, soffit, basement, foundation, or gable vents
Fire-ready roof repairs.
Wildfire embers can find their way to any exposed nooks and crannies of a home. Loose or missing roof shingles or roof tiles create a space for embers to land and ignite a fire on your roof. Address minor repairs to your roof as soon a possible to reduce the risk that an ember will have place to get lodged during a fire.
Consider flammable materials.
If you think it can catch fire, it will! Be aware of anything within zone zero that may be flammable and try to move these items at least five feet away from the exterior walls of your home. This includes firewood, mulch, plants, outdoor furniture, and even doormats if fire is near.
Three home hardening upgrades using fire-resistant building materials.
Class-A Fire resistant roofs.
A new roof built with a Class A roofing material offers the greatest protection from wildfire. If your home is located in a wildfire-prone area and your roof is unrated or if your roof is old and needs to be replaced, IBHS recommends a Class A fire-rated roof.
Fire-resistant window upgrades.
Heat from fires can cause windows and other outdoor glass fixtures to break before the fire even reaches your home. Once broken, window openings make it easier for embers to enter and ignite within your home.
To protect against this, install dual-pane windows with tempered glass to help windows resist fractures caused by wildfire heat.
Installing non-combustible exterior siding will help protect your home in the event of a wildfire. Common non-combustible materials include three-coat stucco, metal siding, and fiber cement siding. Working in combination with other fire preparation upgrades, fire-resistant siding materials will help reduce fire expose to your windows and eves.
Protect your home from wildfire – FAQ.
The Frontline Wildfire Defense System.
Our exterior wildfire sprinkler system is a great addition to a complete home fire hardening plan. Contact us today to learn more and see if our system might be right for your home.