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New vent program helps protect homes during fire season

Posted at 12:08 PM, Jul 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-02 15:08:35-04

Fire season is upon us, and the Montecito Fire Department wants to help you prepare and protect your home from potential wildfires.

The department aims to make more local homes resilient to fires, beyond just creating a defensible space.

Fire officials say embers also pose a big risk if they make their way through a home's vents or other crevices. They add that recent post-fire assessments have found hardened structures had over three times the likelihood of surviving a fire, compared to non-hardened structures.

The Montecito Fire Department launched the 2021 Vent Retrofit Grant program to help local homeowners upgrade their vents to keep embers out and reduce the chances of them igniting fires inside structures.

Through an application process, nine properties in Montecito were chosen to take part in this year's program, with homeowners upgrading their old vents to new, ember-resistant ones.

The Montecito Fire Department hopes more residents participate in the free service next year.

To schedule a complimentary Defensible Space Survey and inquire about home-hardening strategies, contact Montecito Fire's Prevention Bureau at (805) 969-7762 or visit