What Do You Do if You Smell Smoke But Can’t See Fire?

The old saying is that if there’s smoke, there’s fire—but when it comes to house fires, that might not always be the case. There are tons of stories of people sensing a burning smell in their home, only to find that everything is seemingly normal.

If that happens to you, it’s important to know the best practices for dealing with it. Continue reading to learn what to do if you start smelling smoke in the house.

Call the fire department

Our advice is to call the fire department as soon as you start smelling smoke in the house. You can use the non-emergency fire department number if you’re certain there’s not a flame, but call them just to be safe. Depending on where you live, the whole fire department may come to your home dressed in full gear ready to put out a flame, or they might just send a few people out to perform an inspection.

Contact an electrician

As we’ll discuss below, electrical systems are often the cause of a smoky smell. If the fire department notes that the cause of the smoke was faulty electrical wiring, we advise calling an electrician ASAP. While the firefighters can solve the problem for the time being, only a trained electrician can fix it once and for all.

What can cause a smoke smell?

The source of a smoke smell isn’t always easy to pinpoint. Here are a few common causes of a smoky smell that may mean there’s a fire:

  • Electrical smoke: If you’re using an appliance like a toaster or an oven and you start to smell smoke, there’s a good chance that the appliance is the source of the smell. Turning the device off or unplugging it should make the odor go away.
  • Burning materials: We’ve found that objects made of wood, plastic or even metal can be the source of a smoky smell if they’re left too close to a stove, fireplace or other heat sources. Moving the object away from the heat source will solve that problem.
  • Light fixtures: An individual light fixture or even a light bulb can be the source of the smoke. Hopefully, that faulty wiring won’t cause a house fire, but you can never be too safe. If this is a persisting problem throughout the house, it’s in your best interest to call an electrician.

Are you prepared for a house fire?

Your sense of smell may be good, but the best defense against smoke—and a potential fire—are high-quality smoke alarms, sprinkler systems and a few fire extinguishers placed throughout the house. Smoke alarms will detect a fire, while sprinkler systems and fire extinguishers will snuff the flames out.

At Capital Carpet Fire Protection Inc., we specialize in installing and maintaining fire alarms, sprinkler systems and fire extinguishers. We’re your one-stop shop for all of your fire prevention needs. Contact us today to schedule an inspection to see how our team can help reduce your risk of a house fire.