In homes with attached garages, there are certain safety considerations that should be made in order to ensure that safe conditions exist for the occupants. Garages are great for storing vehicles, and are also often used to house combustion appliances such as gas furnaces or water heaters. Although this may be convenient, having combustion devices and engines in a garage could increase the chances of fire hazards and carbon monoxide buildup.

Self closing hinge for occupant door into the garage.

Self closing hinge for occupant door into the garage.

Since vehicles with combustion engines are stored in a garage, there could be a buildup of toxic gasses such as carbon monoxide when a vehicle is running indoors. Also, if a combustion appliance such as a gas furnace or water heater had drafting issues, carbon monoxide can build up and enter into the home. Have an airtight seal between the home and garage can help to reduce the transfer of toxic gasses from the garage into the home.

Since garages also commonly house main electrical panels, fires in garages are common due to electrical issues. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, garage fires can spread farther and cause more injuries than fires that start in other areas of the home. Additionally, garage fires account for higher repair costs when compared to fires caused in other locations. It has been estimated that there are 6,600 garage fires in homes every year, causing 30 deaths, 400 injuries and $457 million in property loss. These statistics and more information can be found by visiting the U.S. Fire Administration website:

One way prevent spread of fire into the home is too install a fire rated self-closing, and self-latching occupant door between the garage and home. When the garage occupant door is left open, toxic gasses can enter into the home, and fire could spread more quickly if a fire were to start inside the garage (which is statistically more likely). Insatlling a self closing mechanism makes sure the door stays close when not in use. Some jurisdictions require a self-closing mechanism at garage occupant doors, but this is not a requirement everywhere. Either way, installation of self-closing mechanisms at a garage occupant door is always recommended, and is a fairly easy and inexpensive upgrade to make in your home.

Please check out the video below to find out more on how to install a self-closing door hinge.