Moving into a new home is exciting and overwhelming. But don’t let the rush of these emotions let you forget the important things! After unpacking, you should go through a home safety check list, to make sure everyone in your home is comfortable and safe. Sometimes, there can be hidden dangers that you hadn’t even considered. Give everything a once-over, and following this home safety checklist when you unpack. Click this link to read all 10 checklist items.
1. Smoke detectors
This one is obvious, but the importance of checking your smoke detectors can’t be stressed enough. Make sure they’re properly installed, working, and clean.
Consider the following statistic from the National Fire Protection Association if you need any motivation: 3 in 5 home fire deaths occurred in homes with no smoke alarms or nonworking smoke alarms. In fires in which the smoke alarms were present but did not operate, almost half of the smoke alarms had missing or disconnected batteries. The NFPA recommends installing smoke alarms inside every sleeping room, plus in the hallway on every level of the home.
2. Fire extinguishers
There are a million new things to buy when you move into a new home, but don’t scrimp when it comes to buying fire extinguishers—get one for every level of your home.
“It’s a simple thing you can do, but you’ll be amazed how many people live in multilevel homes that don’t have this in place,” says Tariq Abdullah, CEO of Tarchitects and Elite Real Estate Inspectors. “It can truly spell the difference between a tragedy and a simple fix.”
3. Carbon monoxide detectors
If your home has a furnace that uses gas or oil, you should also have a carbon monoxide detector. More than 150 deaths due to accidental carbon monoxide poisoning are reported each year, and many of those deaths could be prevented by CO detectors.
“Unlike smoke, carbon monoxide has no color, no taste, no smell and is poisonous,” says Kurt Wedig, president and CEO of OneEvent Technologies. “Prolonged exposure or large amounts of CO can overtake a person in minutes without warning—causing them to lose consciousness and suffocate due to lack of oxygen. “
While many smoke detectors are also carbon monoxide detectors, there’s no guarantee the smoke detector in your home is a dual detector or that it’s working correctly. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends placing both smoke and CO detectors on every level of the home.