HOW CAN YOU PROTECT YOUR HOME FROM A FIRE
It’s important to protect your home from fire, especially during bush fire season. A simple and easy method of fire protecting your home is to install Gutter Guard or Ember Guard on your roof. Gutter guards act as a barrier that stops debris from building up in your gutters, and are made from high quality, fire rated materials and Ember Guard is designed to keep out embers.
SAFEGUARDING HOMES AGAINST BUSHFIRE
Extreme weather and dangerous fire conditions across southern Australia each summer serve a painful reminder of our ongoing need to safeguard our homes against bushfire. As more and more Australians build homes adjacent to bushland areas each year, the number of people affected by the danger grows. The reality check for thousands of Australians living along regional and urban fringes are the statistics that show the high number of homes destroyed by an ember attack. This is where houses ignite and burn due to wind borne embers as opposed to direct flame contact by the bushfire front. Ember attack is in fact the main cause of house fires during a bushfire.
This issue was highlighted after the devastating Victorian bushfires in 2009, which prompted new building regulations for homes built or renovated in bushfire-prone areas (AS3959-2009). The regulations were amended again in 2011 after the Victorian Bushfire Commission decided that homes built in bushfire prone areas needed to further increase their ability to resist ember attack.
WHAT IS AN EMBER ATTACK
Ember attack occurs when burning parts of trees (e.g. twigs, branches, leaves) are carried by winds in a cluster. Embers can range from tiny sub millimeter sparks to large inch sized chunks, which lodge in gutters, get under doorways, enter roof spaces or windows and start internal fires. The movements of embers from a bushfire are the primary cause of spot fires, which contribute to the continued spread of a bushfire. Ember attack can occur for up to 30 minutes before the bushfire front passes a given house and over distances greater than 100 metres from the fire front.
PROTECTING HOMES FROM EMBER ATTACK
“The greatest protection homes can have from burning down in a bushfire is to ensure they are intrinsically ember proof, so they don’t have any gaps where embers can get under doorways or through vents or into roof spaces and start internal fires.” Justin Leonard, CSIRO, 2011
Do you live in a bushfire-prone area? A bushfire-prone area is an area of land that can support a bush fire or is likely to be subject to a bush fire attack (TFS). Designated bushfire prone areas are declared by local governments and certified by state fire services. Land maps have been prepared to identify these areas within council zones. Check with your local council to find out whether your property is in a designated bushfire-prone area. Even if you live in a leafy suburb, you should consider taking steps to mitigate the risk of ember attack to protect your home from spread of fire.
THE RISK OF USING NON-COMPLYING GUTTER GUARDS
The key feature of any leaf guard installed in bushfire prone areas is that it must be NON-COMBUSTIBLE. Some plastic gutter guard companies claim their product is fire resistant, that is, made with plastic that has been treated with flame retardant additives that will extinguish a burning ember. However, plastic is not fire proof like steel. It’s likely that there will still be a hole in the gutter guard where the ember has landed, making the gutter vulnerable to further ember attack. Any holes in the gutter guard will also affect how well it can keep leaves and other debris out of the gutter, reducing its effectiveness overall.
The reality of living in the most fire prone country on earth means that Australians are growing to understand the risks involved of living in bushfire-prone areas and according to multiple studies, these severe weather events are going to become more frequent as our Oceans warm up. Australian Standards have been designed to increase the ability of our homes to withstand attack from bushfires, but it’s up to us to understand and comply with the requirements, to make informed decisions and take action to make our homes safe. It’s important to remember:
PROTECT YOUR HOME AND YOURSELF
Installing a full gutter protection system also eliminates the need to clean your gutters out every week, saving you time and money it can also help protect your home in the event of a nearby fire. Book in a Free Gutter Inspection today!
Annie B -
“We highly recommend the team at Gutter Guard King Tasmania. John and his team installed gutter guard on our tricky roof which is over two levels and has some quirky corners. John responded to our enquiry the same day and followed up with a visit for quotation very quickly. John answered any questions we had on the same day we asked them and was available throughout the project. He also kept in touch to advise timing and delivery of materials etc. His team were very reliable, prompt, polite and a pleasure to have around. They really know their stuff. Ticked all the boxes for us in regards quality, professionalism and price. Exceeded our expectations in many ways as well. Brilliant!”
Stephen H –
“Great service by John. Kept me fully informed of progress of work and checked quality of work after installation to make sure I was completely satisfied. Very clean and tidy - took all rubbish away from my house. I fully recommend this service to anyone who needs gutter guard protection.”
Josh S –
“I work in rentals as a Property Manager and have nothing but positive things to report about Gutter Guard King Tas. They responded to my initial enquiry quickly, quoted quickly and workmanship was perfect. This was the first time using these guys. Very professional and organised. Tenants reported the team was very professional, respectful and organised as well. Could not fault them and would definitely recommend their services from my experience. Not very often I find this level of service in Tas. Highly recommended.”
Alison F –
A very professional, efficient service along with great value for money. Fantastic product thats looks good. Highly recommend.
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Not only will a Professional Gutter Guard System help protect your home during a bush fire. It will stop birds from entering your gutters, keep out leaves & debris as well as pests and vermin.