Jack-o-lanterns, turkey fryers, Christmas lights and trees, cozy fires in the fireplace - the next several months can pose plenty of fire hazards in your home. Before the excitement of the holidays begin, take a few minutes to check your home's fire safety plan.

Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors Replace the batteries and test by pressing the test button or holding a smoke source (like a blown out candle) near the unit.

Fire Extinguishers Make sure your fire extinguisher is rated for all fire types (look for an A-B-C rating). Check the indicator on the pressure gauge to make sure the extinguisher is charged. Ensure that the lock pin is firmly in place and that the discharge nozzle is not clogged. Fire extinguishers should be replaced every six years.

Fire Evacuation Plan Determine an exit path for every bedroom, and make provisions (emergency escape ladders, etc) for bedrooms that are not on the main floor of the home. Establish a location away from the house where everyone should meet.

Fireplace Maintenance If you have a fireplace, check the chimney and flue for soot or creosote (a flammable by-product of burning wood) build-up. Check the flue for blockage and use a chimney cap to prevent birds from building nests at the top of your unprotected flue. You should also test the damper (the metal plate that opens and closes the flue just above the firebox) to make sure it’s working properly. It’s best to have a reputable chimney sweep clean and inspect your fireplace each year, just to be on the safe side.