Home safety is no laughing matter. Whether you are protecting your house from Mother Nature, or those with ill intent or keeping your loved ones safe with indoor protective devices, it’s best to perform an annual safety check and look for areas that could be upgraded for your peace of mind and emotional well-being.
If you live in certain areas of the country that are vulnerable to tornadoes, earthquakes or hurricanes, keeping your house and occupants out of danger is probably always on your mind at least part of the year. However, even if your area isn’t generally at risk for one of these types of natural disasters, bad storms can pop up anytime.
One of your best defenses against storms that cause flying debris is to trim your trees regularly and check them annually for root health. The healthier the tree is and the fewer dead branches, the less likely your home is to be damaged by falling limbs. Even if your home withstands a strong storm, there is sometimes collateral damage to outside appliances such as HVAC units. Installing an enclosed ac disconnect or fuse box can help protect this expensive piece of equipment.
Impact windows can also help bring you peace of mind. Impact windows provide insulation with a three-layer system that can minimize hail and flying debris damage. The frames are also extra sturdy with a reinforced layer built right into the wood or vinyl.
Keeping your loved ones and valuables safe from outside threats should be a priority. Don’t make your home an easy target by leaving doors unlocked and valuables within sight of the street. There are also a few simple upgrades you can do to your home to decrease its vulnerability to opportunists.
Installing strong doors and locks on all outside entrances is the first step. Most home break-ins occur when someone kicks in a door, so adding a door frame protection as well as a strong door is a relatively easy solution. There are several types of strong doors including wood, fiberglass and reinforced steel to fit your style. Upgrading to a Grade 1 deadbolt can be a DIY project.
Motion sensor lighting as well as landscape lightening are effective crime deterrents. Few criminals are willing to kick in a door or break a window with a spotlight on them. Complete a careful assessment of your property and look for dark spots where someone could hide. If you must be away, set a timer for lights or even the TV to come one, so it always looks like someone is home.
Another increasingly popular home safety feature is a video monitoring system such as Ring where you can check who is on your property when you’re not home or from the safety of the inside of your house. The outdoor motion-detecting cameras are simple to install and the company also offers upgrades like a professional monitoring system, outdoor lighting and an application to share videos of suspicious individuals in the neighborhood.
Although most threats come from the outside, some come from within. Carbon monoxide poisoning, for example, comes from the build-up of CO from everyday appliances like fireplaces, stoves, generators, and also from car exhaust. CO might make you sick if you’re awake, but if you’re asleep, you could die before waking up. Keep your family safe by always using gas burning equipment outside or in a well-ventilated space. Get your heater and water heater serviced every year by a professional, and most importantly, install a carbon monoxide detector to alert you if CO levels are too high.
Working smoke detectors should be installed throughout the house, at every level and outside every bedroom. Yes, they can be annoying when you burn popcorn, but that high pitched shriek is what will wake you up from a sound sleep before it’s too late. Keep small fire extinguishers handy in the kitchen and at least one upstairs. Make sure it’s out of the box and ready to use at a moment’s notice.
Keeping your some safe and secure is worth the trouble. Inside you are protecting your most valuable assets from harm – yourself and your family.