Let us help you stay safe from fires this holiday season.


By David Steckel, Home Expert

Between choosing gifts, outfitting your home for the holidays, and preparing for festive gatherings, we know you already have plenty on your plate. But it only takes a few more simple steps on your checklist to make sure you and your loved ones stay safe this winter — the season when home fires are likeliest to occur.

According to the National Fire Prevention Association, fires over the holiday season cause an average of $13 million in direct property damage. Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are the three days we see the most cooking-related holiday fires. Cooking is the leading cause of fires, but many seasonal staples such as space heaters, candles, and decorative lights (both on exteriors and indoors on trees) are also common fire-causing culprits. 

Most homeowners, unfortunately, underestimate the importance of fire prevention. Our recent Holiday Fire Prevention Survey* found that 75% of people know someone who has experienced a house fire and 37% have experienced one themselves, most of which occurred over the holiday season. Yet, when asked if they feel personally at risk from fires, only 1 in 5 homeowners responded “yes.”

holiday fire infographic #1

Thumbtack’s Holiday Fire Prevention Checklist.

To ensure this holiday season is full of joy and celebration, we want to help homeowners understand the causes of house fires — and take action to prevent them. We’ve created our new “Holiday Fire Prevention Checklist” that allows homeowners to check their home’s fire risk through a quiz and seamlessly book a home service professional to help prevent fires before they happen. 

The checklist highlights the top projects homeowners should tackle before the holidays to most effectively minimize risk. It includes:

  • Hang holiday lights (hire a pro): A professional installer can take this festive (but time-consuming) task off your hands — and ensure you’re not overloading your circuits.
  • Sweep chimney (hire a pro): Annual inspections and cleanings are a must to minimize fire hazards, manage creosote buildup, and prevent gas leaks.
  • Maintain gas fireplace (hire a pro)These fireplaces need regular maintenance too — connections can corrode over time, leading to potential gas leaks.
  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms (DIY): Working alarms are crucial. Testing yearly and replacing every 7 years is the best way to make sure you're protected.
  • Clean dryer vents (hire a pro): Lint buildup causes about 3,000 house fires yearly. Cleaning your dryer’s exhaust pipe can help prevent a fire and improve efficiency.
  • Inspect fire extinguishers (DIY): Always keep a working dry chemical fire extinguisher (the dial should be in the “green region”) easily accessible and near the kitchen.
  • Trim trees (hire a pro): Keeping your trees trimmed prolongs the life of your roof, cuts down on potential fire hazards, and can prevent wildlife from moving in.
  • Deep clean gas range (DIY or hire a pro): Built-up grease can be a big fire hazard — especially with a gas range. Be sure to clean it out every 3-6 months.
  • Ensure space heaters are not a hazard (DIY): Only run space heaters in a clear, hazard-free space — and never overnight.
  • Do an electrical check (hire a pro)Prevent fire hazards by having a pro check your property (inside and out) for faulty electrical wiring and overloaded circuits.
  • Maintain Christmas tree (DIY): Make sure to water your tree, unplug it at night, or set a timer to avoid fires — artificial trees are also a great alternative.

The gift of peace of mind.

holiday fire infographic #3

Our goal is to give homeowners the comfort and confidence of being well-prepared. While nearly half of the homeowners we surveyed (48%) admit to low levels of knowledge about house fire causes and prevention, the vast majority (86%) told us they want to be better informed.

In addition to creating a resource hub for homeowners, from December 1 through December 9, 2022, Thumbtack will also be offering consumers $50 off** their next fire prevention home project** — from hiring a chimney pro to booking a home inspection, and more (terms and conditions apply).

Visit www.thumbtack.com/content/fire-prevention to learn more about potential fire hazards, to see how your home ranks on the safety scale, and to book a pro to tackle your prevention checklist. It’s a simple way to ensure a worry-free season and give yourself the peace of mind to focus on what matters most. 

*Methodology: This sample of 1000 US adults (aged 18-65) was surveyed on November 16 and 17, 2022. DKC Analytics conducted and analyzed this survey with a sample procured using the Pollfish survey delivery platform, which delivers online surveys globally through mobile apps and the mobile web along with the desktop web. No post-stratification has been applied to the results.

**Terms and conditions: Thumbtack users may receive $50 off one project, from December 1, 2022 through December 9, 2022. This offer is limited to the first 2,000 users to redeem the discount. Discounts only apply to projects that cost $50 or more (before tax and tip), booked and paid for through Thumbtack. Not all Service Professionals accept payment through Thumbtack. Make sure you check with your Service Professional to confirm they accept payment through Thumbtack before hiring them. The discount will be automatically applied at checkout.

Discounts cannot be stacked (in other words, only one discount can be used per booking), and discounts are for one-time use only. On-Demand bookings (sometimes referred to as “Pro matched by Thumbtack”) are not eligible for discounts. Learn more about On-Demand bookings. Discounts are subject to the terms outlined in our Terms of Use.

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