Most people today have super busy schedules. Days filled with caring for children, spouses, parents, pets, school, cooking, cleaning, family activities, yard work… and because of that we can easily overlook putting together a very important plan that could help us and our families survive a fire emergency. So let us help you think it through to get it done!
I know, no one ever wants to think about having a fire in their home. But…
The way we survive an emergency is by preparing for the possibility of it happening
So let’s make sure we take the time to put together this very important plan. If you don’t know where to start you can download our free Home Fire Safety Plan that will give you the steps and tools you need to make it easier for you.
In my last blog Make Radon Testing Part of Your Spring Home Check-Up we talked about testing for radon in your home what to do if you find it. In this post, we’re going to talk about developing 1 simple Home Safety Plan by following the 3 easy steps listed below.
#1 Smoke Detector Functional Test & Replacement
I’m sure most of you have heard when you set your clocks an hour forward in the spring you also change the batteries in your smoke detectors. It has worked well because most of us do it.
But, just because we change the batteries and press the test button once a year doesn’t mean your smoke detector is working properly. We must do a functional test on every smoke detector in our homes.
Let me explain why. Because a smoke detector has a small sensor that actually has to see the smoke in order to sound the alarm. If the sensor isn’t working we have a major problem.
Detectors that have reached the age of 10 have a very high failure rate because the eye gets covered with a film making it unable to see the smoke
In fact, some smoke detectors have labels on them with instructions to discard after 10 years. Many states have programs that will send you a free replacement if you have a smoke detector that is over this age recommendation.
Here is the link for anyone living in the state of Tennessee. If you would like to check to see if your state has a program just google free smoke detectors for your state.
Below are the two functional test options you can do to check proper function of your home smoke detectors.
- Smoke Can Test: This test is done using Smoke Detector Tester Spray. Just follow instructions on the can. Very simple test without having to remove the actual smoke detector from its location.
- Candle Test – This test is done with real smoke. You can remove the smoke detector from the mounting base to do this test or leave it in place. Simply light a candle and then blow the candle out and position the candle in front of the face of the smoke detector to see if the sensor sees the smoke. If the sensor is working properly it will sound the alarm.
If your smoke detector does not sound the alarm during this test you need to replace it.
# 2 Develop your Family Evacuation Plan
We all know that communication is the key to success. The evacuation plan is a visual communication tool for you and your family members.
It could be the difference between life and death in the event of a fire emergency. If you download our free Home Fire Safety Plan we have a Family Evacuation Plan Worksheet in it.
# 3 Fire Extinguisher Inspections & Purchases
Fire extinguishers are a small but very important part of your Home Fire Safety Plan. They can save lives and property by putting out a fire before it spreads.
But, purchasing fire extinguishers should only be done after having properly working smoke detectors and a good home fire evacuation plan, all part of a Home Safety Plan.
If you already have these items completed and are ready to purchase your fire extinguishers then Kudos to you! Here is a bit of information to help you purchase the right fire extinguishers.
The standard ABC Rated Fire Extinguishers will work for your home. They generally work well on all fires. This link is for a pack of 4 with mounting brackets for a little over $50 dollars. You can also get a special Kitchen Fire Extinguisher for $16 dollars. So as you can see they are very reasonably priced.
Unfortunately, I have not found a state or federal program that will provide them if this is something you can not purchase. Remember, fire extinguishers are recommended not required in a Home Fire Safety Plan.
We hope by giving you our Home Fire Safety Plan and these three simple steps encourages you to carve out the time needed to get this important plan done for you and your family’s safety. If you haven’t checked the levels of Radon in your home check out our blog on Make Radon Testing Part of Your Spring Home Check-up.
Blessings from our home to yours – until next time