Fire Safety and Prevention in Manufactured Homes

A living room with gray and white furniture and a floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace.

Find out how modern manufactured homes are built to national fire safety standards and how to prevent fires in your home.

As a homeowner, you want to make sure your home and family are safe, especially from fires. Modern manufactured homes are constructed with durability, quality and safety in mind, including when it comes to fire prevention. Learn more about how manufactured homes are built to help protect you and several precautions you can take to prevent fires in your home.

Constructed with Fire Safety in Mind

Manufactured homes today have been designed for strict fire safety standards to reduce hazards and help detect a fire early. Since the HUD Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standard was enacted in 1976, new manufactured homes have been required to follow federal construction and safety codes, including items that help prevent fires. The Manufactured Housing Institute highlights some of these standards, which include:

  • Strict standards for preventing the spread of flames and smoke generation in the home’s building materials.
  • Egress windows in all bedrooms, which are built to open for easy emergency escape.
  • Smoke detectors required inside or immediately adjacent to all bedrooms, the top of the stairs and on the basement ceiling near the stairs if the home has a basement.)
  • A minimum of two separate exterior doors that are reachable without passing through other lockable doors. In comparison, site-built homes are required to have only one exterior door and do not have a reachability requirement.

Because manufactured homes are constructed to a national building code instead of varying state and local codes, every new manufactured home in the country is held to the same strict fire safety standards. According to a report by the National Fire Protection Association, “Manufactured homes have a lower rate of civilian fire injuries per 100,000 occupied housing units than other one- or two-family homes, because manufactured homes have not only a lower fire rate per 1,000 housing units but also a lower injury rate per 100 fires.”

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Home Fire Prevention and Safety Tips

There are several precautions to keep in mind to help prevent a house fire, as well as tips to remember in case of one.

  1. First, always have a fire escape plan. Prepare a plan to help any children, elderly family members or family members with mobility limitations out of your home. Include your pets in the plan too! Practice your fire escape plan routinely so that your family is aware of what to do. Also find two ways out of each room in the event the primary exit is blocked by fire or smoke.

Discuss a designated area to meet outside your home. Make sure your spot is far enough away from your home to be out of harm’s way, such as the mailbox at the end of the driveway or across the street to a neighbor's front yard.

The American Humane Society also suggests you “put a decal in your home’s front window indicating the number and type of pets you have – Providing this information can cut down on the time responders spend searching your home in the case of a fire.”

  1. You can place emergency supply kits with first aid items at multiple exit points around your home too if you need to evacuate.

  2. Have multiple smoke detectors installed throughout your home and test them monthly. It’s also a good idea to have smoke-alarm activated nightlights throughout your home. At least twice a year, check the batteries and replace as needed.

  3. Have a fire extinguisher easily accessible in your home. Good places include in your kitchen, near fireplaces and near a grill on your porch or deck. Have it serviced and refilled when needed and inspect its condition often . You can check with your local fire department to see if they provide fire extinguisher refill services.

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  1. Follow basic fire safety practices for you home, like the following:
  • Make sure to blow out candles before going to sleep or leaving your home. Opting for flameless LED candles is a great alternative as well and prevents black soot from building up in your home.
  • Unplug heaters before bed and don’t leave the house with them on.
  • Keep heaters away from flammable materials, so they do not accidentally tip over and catch something on fire, such as a blanket or curtains.
  • Don’t leave your stove and oven unattended, and check they’re off before leaving the kitchen.
  • Clean your stove of grease and oil regularly to prevent a grease fire.
  • Clean your dryer’s lint filter after every load and check your dryer vent monthly for excess debris. Avoid running the washer or dryer while you're away from home.
  • If you have children or pets, make sure to block off access to your fireplace for their safety.
  • Properly maintain fireplaces through cleaning and servicing regularly.
  1. If you smoke, smoke outside to reduce risk of a fire starting inside, and make sure cigarettes and cigars are completely out before disposal.
  2. To protect sentimental items and important documents, store them in a fireproof safe. It’s recommended to make digital copies of important documents and photos to preserve them.

It is always smart to take as many precautions as possible and to have plans in place for different emergencies that could happen in any home. Applying these tips can help keep you, your family and your beautiful home safe. Do you want more maintenance tips to help you throughout the year? Let us help you take care of your home with the Homeownership category on our Studio blog.

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