Free Home Safety Checks


Request a home safety check by calling your local fire station (TTY 703-228-4610).

The Arlington County Fire Department offers free home safety checks to residents of Arlington and the City of Falls Church. Let the fire department assess your:

  • Home evacuation plan
  • Frequency of furnace and fireplace cleaning
  • Safe storage of flammable materials
  • Smoke alarm placement
  • Space heaters
  • Extension cord use
  • Safety practices in kitchens and around water
  • Smoking habits
  • Other possible fire hazards

If there are children in the home, the Fire Department will check:

  • Keeping medicines, cleaning fluids and sharp objects in a latched or locked cabinet or drawer
  • Using toddler gates at the top and bottom of stairs in homes with a child under 3 years old
  • Home fire evacuation plans and fire drills
  • Keeping window blind and drapery cords secured
  • Determining if there is chipping or peeling paint
  • Using safe furniture and toys
  • Assessing general safety precautions to prevent accidents and injuries

Home Fire Safety Inspection Checklist

A fire can occur in any part of your home. Use the following checklist to do a safety audit.

Smoking Habits

  • Are all matches and lighters kept out of children’s reach?
  • Is “NO SMOKING IN BED” a rule of the house?
  • Is your family aware that ash trays should NEVER be emptied into waste baskets?
  • Are there plenty of large, safe ash trays throughout the house?
  • Do you check for smoldering cigarette butts in the furniture?

Electrical Hazards

  • Are appliances checked periodically for good operating conditions?
  • Are you careful not to run extension cords under rugs or over hooks and nails?
  • When using extension cords for appliances, does the gauge of both cords match?
  • Are electrical outlets overloaded?


  • Do you keep rubbish cleaned out of attics, garages and yards?
  • Is paint kept in tightly closed metal containers?
  • Are flammable liquids stored in safety cans and kept away from heat and children?
  • Have you make it a rule to NEVER use flammable liquids for cleaning clothes or start fires?
  • Are oily rags kept in a tightly sealed container?
  • Is your clothes dryer vent clean and properly installed?

Heating and Cooking

  • If you have a fireplace, is a screen always placed in front of it?
  • Is the filter for your forced air heater changed yearly and the venting cleaned?
  • Are furnaces and wood burning stoves in good repair and located away from combustible walls and ceilings?
  • Do you have the fireplace chimney cleaned and checked periodically?
  • Do you make sure combustibles are not stored near the stove, heater or fireplace?
  • Do your children keep a safe distance from flame and heat sources?

Smoke Alarms

  • Have you installed a smoke alarm on each floor and in every bedroom?
  • Do you test your smoke alarm(s) every month?
  • Do you replace the battery of your battery operated smoke alarm every year?
  • Are your smoke alarms less than 10 years old?

Fire Escape Plan

  • Does your family have a fire escape plan prepared?
  • Is your escape plan posted and regularly practiced?
  • Does each bedroom have TWO exits?
  • Do you have a meeting place so you will know everyone is outside and safe?
  • Are emergency response numbers posted on all telephones?
  • Is your address on or near your telephone?
  • Do all family members know how to dial 9-1-1 for fire, police or medical emergencies?
  • Do you show your babysitter/guests your home escape routes and review 9-1-1- with her/him?
  • Does your family (and babysitter) know the first rule in fire emergencies: Get everyone out fast and don’t go back inside.

Fire Extinguishers

  • Do you have a UL or FM approved fire extinguisher in your home?
  • Do you take it out two times a year and shake it to keep the powder from packing?


  • Have all dried grass cuttings, tree trimmings and weeds been removed from your property?
  • Can you see your house number from the street?

Home Fire Safety Inspection Checklist

Kids’ Fire Safety Checklist