Table of Contents
Owning a property is one of the most important investments most
people make in their lives. We work hard to provide a home and a future
for ourselves and our loved ones. Why risk losing it when fire hits close
Wildfires dramatically alter the terrain and ground conditions of the
affected area and can destroy homes, businesses, infrastructure, natural
resources, and agriculture.
While you can’t prevent all wildfires from happening, there are some ways
to secure your property to minimize damage and keep your home and your
Here’s how you can help protect your home from wildfires.
OUTSIDE THE HOME
FORTIFY YOUR ROOF
The likelihood your home will survive a wildfire is based
largely on how your home is built and what materials are
used. Install or replace your roof with a Class A-rated
roof with noncombustible coverings.
CONSTRUCT YOUR ROOF WITH FIRE-RESISTANT MATERIALS
Install and replace eaves with short
overhangs and flat ledges. Wildfires
might cause embers to fly and latch
on to your roof’s ledges and eaves,
resulting in a fire.
KEEP EMBERS OUT
Wind-blown embers can be extremely dangerous during
a fire. Cover exterior attic vents and under-eave vents
with metal wire mesh no larger than 1/8 inch to keep
embers out. Install a fire block in the gap between the
top of framed walls and the foundation of the house to
starve the fire of oxygen and prevent it from spreading.
DID YOU KNOW?
The roof is the most at-risk
in a wildfire because of its
size and orientation.
INSTALL AND REPLACE EXTERIOR WALL COVERINGS
Exterior wall coverings that are noncombustible
or fire-resistant and not susceptible to melting are
recommended. A minimum fire-resistance rating
of one hour for the wall assembly is recommended.
CREATE 30 FEET OF DEFENSIBLE SPACE AROUND YOUR HOME
Reduce or remove flammable vegetation, use fewer
flammable species, and clear all combustibles from
your exterior space. In the defensible space, use
noncombustible materials such as gravel, brick, or concrete.
REGULARLY CLEAN AND REMOVE DEBRIS FROM THE ROOF AND GUTTERS
Debris can catch fire from wind-blown embers. Regular
maintenance reduces the likelihood of something catching
on fire on top of your home.
ENCLOSE YOUR FOUNDATION
Foundations of homes in fire-prone areas should be
enclosed. This lowers the chance of wind-blown embers
getting underneath your home.
PLAN FOR ACCESS TO WATER
Purchase and install external sprinkler systems with
dedicated power sources or a water tank, if no water
source is available. Connect garden hoses long enough
to reach any area of the home and fill garbage cans,
tubs, or other large containers with water.
PROTECT LARGE WINDOWS FROM RADIANT HEAT
Install multi-pane windows, tempered safety glass,
or fireproof shutters.
INSTALL HIGHLY VISIBLE STREET SIGNS AND PROPERTY ADDRESSES
Make sure street signs and address numbers are
highly visible to help firefighters and other emergency
responders quickly find your property.
SEAL GAPS AROUND OPENINGS IN EXTERIOR WALLS AND ROOFS
Utility connections often go through exterior walls of
your home. Seal gaps in exterior walls and roofs with
fire-resistant caulk, mortar, or fire-protective expanding
foam. Fill large gaps with heat-expanding sealant or
fire-protective sheets or pillows.
INSIDE THE HOME
REVIEW YOUR INSURANCE POLICY
Taking a few minutes to check your homeowners or mobile
home insurance policy and verifying your coverage can help you
process a claim in the future and get back on your feet faster
after a wildfire.
PREPARE OR UPDATE A LIST OF YOUR HOME’S CONTENTS
Documenting all of your belongings will give you peace of
mind and help with the insurance claims process. Consider
documenting your contents visually, either by taking photos of
high-value items or walking through your home and videotaping
your belongings for reference.
FEMA, PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY
Learn how to protect your home or business from
FEMA, WILDFIRE MITIGATION FAQS AND RESOURCES
Find more resources and information on wildfire mitigation
FIRE ADAPTED COMMUNITIES LEARNING NETWORK
Connect to people and communities who are striving
to live safely with wildfire
NATIONAL FIRE PROTECTION ASSOCIATION
Find out more about Firewise USA, a national program
that teaches people how to adapt to living with wildfires