Home safety is a significant concern for everyone. It’s not just about keeping burglars and other criminals away but also ensuring your family is safe from fires, carbon monoxide poisoning, and other hazards.
The precautions to take depend on the type of home you live in and the specific risks in your area. Your children’s age, health, and activity level also play a role in determining the home safety measures.
Besides this, consider the needs of the elderly, sick, or disabled persons visiting or living in your home. Here are the critical concerns.
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Electrical Faults And Hazards
You risk shock and fire if you don’t maintain your home’s electrical system. Check outlets and cords regularly, don’t overload circuits, and use extension cords temporarily.
If an outlet feels warm, smells burning, or sparks, disconnect appliances and have an electrician check the outlet and wiring.
Electrical panel upgrades keep your home’s electrical system current and prevent fires. The system can accommodate your increasing needs as you add appliances and electronics.
Gas And Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Gas leaks and carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning present serious risks. Install a CO detector near each sleeping area, and check the batteries every six months. If the alarm sounds, leave your home immediately and call the gas company or fire department.
Don’t turn on lights or appliances, which could cause an explosion. Have your home’s natural gas appliances serviced yearly by a qualified technician. Remember also to clean the chimney and vent pipes.
Install good locks on all doors and windows, and use them. Keep valuables out of sight, and don’t advertise your absence on social media. If you’re going on vacation, have a neighbor collect your mail and newspapers. Burglars often look for these items as signs that no one is home.
Installing a security system including remote-controlled door locks, security cameras, and a burglar alarm deters burglars. Motion sensor lights are an excellent option for the outdoors.
Water And Plumbing
Water damage is the second most common insurance claim; take steps to protect your home. Check gutters and downspouts and clear debris. This prevents water from seeping into your home and causing mold and mildew.
You should also insulate pipes to prevent freezing. Let water drip from faucets during cold weather, and open cabinet doors to let the heat from the room reach pipes.
If you’re going on vacation, shut off the water to your home. Doing so prevents water damage if a pipe bursts while you’re away.
You can reduce the risk of fire by taking simple precautions, including:
- Never leave candles unattended, and keep them away from flammable materials
- Consider using battery-operated candles
- Check electrical cords and appliances regularly, and don’t overload circuits
- Don’t store flammable liquids near a heat source
- Install smoke detectors on every level of your home, test monthly and change batteries annually
- Develop an escape plan, and practice it with your family
Child Safety Concerns
The hazards vary depending on the age of your child. Keep harmful chemicals and cleaners out of reach for all children, and install hardware to prevent furniture tip-overs. Teach older children about fire and home safety. Install child safety gates at the top and bottom of stairways, latches on cabinets, and childproof electrical outlets.
If you have physically challenged or elderly members in your family, make sure your home is safe for them. Install handrails on stairways, and grab bars in the bathroom. Avoid slippery throw rugs, and ensure all electrical cords are out of the way to prevent trips and falls.
Review The Safety Precautions Regularly
Keeping your home safe is an ongoing process that changes depending on your family’s needs and the expected hazards.
Review your safety precautions regularly, and update them as necessary. If possible, consult experts who advise or enlighten you on how to make your home as safe as possible.