GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The low temperatures overnight into Friday morning will be in the low to mid-40s and some spots in the Berkshires may get into the upper 30s!

The Great Barrington Fire Department is reminding homeowners of preparations to take as thermostats are kicking on the heat.

7 Day Forecast

  • One of the most important things in our area is making sure your chimney is clean and in good shape. We strongly encourage leaving the roof climbing to the professionals and Santa Claus – hire a professional chimney sweep to clean and inspect your chimney.
  • Check your Heating System- Before it gets really cold—early October is the ideal time—turn on your heating unit to ensure it is working properly. Your unit has been sitting dormant for about 6 months, so you’ll want to make sure everything is in proper working order before you really need it. Especially if you have oil, we recommend having a professional HVAC tech clean and service your equipment. It will burn better and more efficient. Make sure you have a working CO detector on every level of your home including the basement. It will – without a doubt – save your life.
  • Perform a DIY home inspection, then break out the leaf blower and rake! Something as simple as a pile of leaves can be the catalyst for a fire. Take a couple of hours, and clean your gutters, check your downspouts, and remove all leaves and debris from the perimeter of your space. Make sure to clean them out from under decks and porches.
  • Never park your vehicle over a pile of leaves. The heat emitted from your car can ignite the leaves, destroying your vehicle and all things around it. Certainly not a good way to end the day.
  • After every load of laundry, always clean the lint screen. While the chimney sweep is there, have them clean your dryer vent, at minimum clean it yourself.
  • Every month, test your smoke detectors. Doing it more than twice a year that you change the batteries is a good practice.
  • If you plan to use electric heaters, make sure that they are in perfect shape. Consider replacing them with a more efficient model. Make sure that the cords are in good shape and not showing any sign of wear and always plugged directly into the outlet and not an extension cord.

When is the first day of fall 2023?

The first day of fall is this Saturday, September 23rd, also known as the autumn equinox. The clocks roll back one hour at 2 a.m. on November 5th. Use that extra hour to prepare your home or business for a fire-safe fall and winter season.

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WWLP-22News, an NBC affiliate, began broadcasting in 1953 by providing local news, network, syndicated, and local programming to western Massachusetts. Follow 22News on X @WWLP22News, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.