Keep you and your family safe! Learn how to handle lithium-ion batteries, test your smoke alarms, and get free assistance from firefighters through our Alarm Program. Explore essential fire safety information for homeowners, renters, and anyone concerned about fire hazards.

Lithium-Ion Battery Safety

Lithium-ion batteries supply power to many kinds of devices including smart phones, laptops, e-scooters/e-bikes, e-cigarettes, smoke alarms, toys, and even cars. If not used correctly, or if damaged, these batteries can catch on fire or explode.

The problem

  • These batteries store a large amount of energy in a small amount of space.
  • Sometimes batteries are not used the right way; batteries not designed for a specific use can be dangerous.
  • Like any product, a small number of these batteries are defective. They can overheat, catch fire, or explode.

Safety tips

  • Purchase and use devices that are listed by a qualified testing laboratory.
  • Always follow the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Only use the battery that is designed for the device. 
  • Put batteries in the device the right way.
  • Only use the charging cord that came with the device.
  • Do not charge a device under your pillow, on your bed, or on a couch.
  • Do not keep charging the device or device battery after it is fully charged.
  • Keep batteries at room temperature when possible. Do not charge them at temperatures below 0°C (32°F) or above 40°C (105°F).
  • Store batteries away from anything that can catch fire.

Signs of a problem

Stop using the battery if you notice these problems:

  • Odor
  • Change in colour
  • Too much heat
  • Change in shape
  • Leaking
  • Odd noises

If it is safe to do so, move the device away from anything that can catch fire. Call 9-1-1.

Battery disposal

  • Do not put lithium-ion batteries in the trash.
  • Recycling is always the best option.
  • Take them to a battery recycling location or contact your community for disposal instructions.
  • Do not put discarded batteries in piles
  • Batteries and e-waste can be disposed at District of Muskoka Transfer Stations or at various business locations in Huntsville.

Charging an e-bike

Charging your battery in a flat, dry area away from children, direct sunlight, liquids, tripping hazards, and in a location where the e-bike is not at risk of falling.

Smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms

Smoke alarms increase your chance of surviving a fire in your home. Carbon monoxide (CO) alarms will make you aware of the presence of the dangerous gas. According to the Ontario Fire Code, you must have a working smoke and carbon monoxide alarm outside all sleeping areas of the home. In addition, smoke alarms are also required on every storey of the home.

Test your alarms monthly and know the sound of your carbon monoxide and smoke alarms; they are different.

If your alarm sounds, go outside and call 9-1-1.

Alarm Program

Firefighters can come to your home, for free, to replace batteries or fully install the correct number of alarms in your home.

The fire department can be available to assist with the inspection and testing of your Smoke/CO alarm(s). Please refer to the criteria below to see if you are eligible for additional resources from the department in the way of installation and/or batteries.

 Homeowner eligibility
  • If you own your home and are a senior; or
  • If you own your home and have a physical disability; or
  • If you own your home and are on a low income
 Renter (of home, or apartment) eligibility
  • Landlords are responsible for installing and maintaining all alarms
  • If you live in a rental property and have concerns with alarm operation, maintenance or installation - call the Fire Prevention Division at 705-789-5201, option 2 or submit a fire safety complaint form

Complete the alarm program request form or call Fire Prevention at 705-789-5201, option 2.

Home Fire Sprinklers

Home sprinklers can:

  • Control or extinguish fires before the fire department arrives
  • Extinguish a fire with just one sprinkler
  • Protect property
  • Save lives
  • Reduce insurance costs

Learn more on the home fire sprinkler Canada website.

Apartments and Condos

Fire safety in apartments and condos:

  • Know the evacuation and fire safety procedures for your building
  • If you are unsure, ask your landlord or condo corporation

The Ministry of Community Safety & Correctional Services website offers more about fire safety and public education.

Fire Safety Complaints

If you suspect a fire code violation, please complete the fire safety complaint form.