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Most Common Causes of House Fires

1/3/2022 (Permalink)

House on fire and smoke everywhere House on fire and smoke everywhere

An accidental fire can ignite with frightening unpredictability, spread uncontrollably in seconds, and can decimate a home within minutes. House fires endanger everyone in the home and even small fires that are put out quickly often result in thousands of dollars of damage.

Most common causes of house fires in the U.S


Cooking fires are among the most common types of house fires, causing around 49 percent of all residential fires.

Tools and food can catch on fire and spread quickly. If someone is not in the kitchen to extinguish the fire, it spreads rapidly through the house. Portable cooking appliances, such as toasters and electric griddles can also be a source of fires. Never leave these portable appliances unsupervised, and make sure they are cool to the touch before storing them away. Every kitchen should have a fire extinguisher that is rated for kitchen fires.  

Heating Equipment

Space heaters can cause fires when they are placed too close to other items. Anything that is combustible or can catch fire should not be anywhere near a space heater. Space heaters should not be left unattended. Always follow the instructions on any heating device you use, and inspect it regularly to ensure it is in good condition.

Christmas Tree Fires

Christmas tree fires are another leading cause of house fires. Christmas tree fires also caused about $14.8 million in property damage each year. Never leave Christmas tree lights plugged in when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, no matter if the tree is natural or artificial. Also lights left turned on cause the tree to overheat and catch fire.

Smoking Materials

Smoking causes thousands of houses fires each year. House fires can start from a lit cigarette or a lighter. Accidentally fires from cigarette butts dropped on carpeting, furniture, or other flammable materials can quickly spread a fire through the entire house. Smoking outside of the home is the most effective way to reduce the risk of house fires caused by smoking materials.


Candles should never be left unattended. Keep matches and lighters locked in a secure place if you have kids. You can reduce the risk of fires caused by candles by trimming the wicks each time you use the candle. Electric and battery-operated candles can also help reduce the risk of house fires caused by candles.


Leaving appliances unattended and misusing appliances are also common causes of appliance fires in homes. Appliances result in thousands of houses fires each year. Fires started by an appliance can quickly spread to other rooms in the house. Defective appliances can cause a spark, which ignites a fire. 

 If you suffer a disaster from Fire Damage, Smoke Damage, or Soot Damage, call  SERVPRO of Garfield & Pitkin right away! We are available 24/7, 365 days a year!

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