When we first moved into our forever home, it was in December of two years ago. The temperature had just dropped. We ended up having an issue with the plumbing in our century home that caused a weird odor. We knew it wasn’t carbon monoxide, but we were worried about another harmful gas. So we called the fire department and they came to check it out for us. Luckily, it was a false alarm and just due to the plumbing not having been used in a long time. I’ll never forget that feeling of urgency and needing to make sure our smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors were working. We use the first of the year and mid-year as the moments we test and change the batteries for all of our detectors. And that’s why I’ve created a First Alert Home Safety Priority Checklist.
Make a plan + communicate it
Before we get started with our twice-yearly First Alert Home Safety Priority checklist, you need a plan. My kids are still young, but making a plan for home safety was at the top of my checklist when we moved into our forever home. I wrote out a list of important phone numbers, laminated them, and hung them on our fridge; I’ve relayed how to make an emergency call from a cell phone; and we all have a place to meet outside a safe distance from the house if we need to exit the house in a hurry.
This is crucial. In case of an emergency, an outdoor meeting location is important for kids of all ages. My kids know we meet by the big tree in the backyard and wait for one another. They don’t go back in the house. Period.
When we go through our home safety checklist, I remind my kids of our plan. Oftentimes they will sigh and say “I know, mom.” But, nonetheless, it’s important to repeat and remember.
Why you need to make home safety a priority
At some point in our lives, every single one of us has thought “oh, that won’t happen to me.” But something about growing older and wiser reminds us that, yes, that can happen to us. And, although it isn’t pleasant to think about, it is responsible to do so.
Being aware of the invisible dangers
In addition to things you can see, like fire, there are other potential, less obvious, dangers lurking behind the scenes. One of those invisible dangers is carbon monoxide.
Carbon Monoxide is an invisible, odorless and tasteless gas that is produced from any fuel burning device in your home (like your furnace or gas fireplace). The only way to detect carbon monoxide is to install detectors on each floor and in every bedroom of your home. I trust First Alert to keep my family safe and to alert me in the case of a safety issue.
According to the CDC, carbon monoxide is the number one cause of accidental poisoning deaths in the United States. Approximately 50,000 Americans visit emergency rooms each year with carbon monoxide poisoning. How scary is that!? I trust our First Alert carbon monoxide detectors to keep my family safe.
Our First Alert carbon monoxide detectors have a built-in 10-year sealed battery and don’t require installation. Once a month, I test the alarm with the test button, but other than that, we just leave it. It displays a digital temperature read as well. Which is super helpful.
Dangerous cords and surge protectors
Something you may not have visible in your home are dangerous cords. When electrical cords are fraying or damaged, that puts them at risk for starting house fires. Every few months you should be going through your cords (as well as surge protectors) to make sure they are not damaged. Check to make sure you aren’t overloading your outlets and surge protectors as well. As those can be a danger resulting in a house fire.