Smoke Detectors are extremely valuable and inexpensive tools for your home. The same goes for Carbon Monoxide Detectors (CO2). Both are indispensable when it comes to alerting you and your family to a threat in your home. While these tools are nothing new to the market there still remain too many structures that that either do not have them or do not have them properly installed.
Smoke Detectors detect smoke in the air and can commonly indicate that there is a fire in a house and some models can additionally detect heat. The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) urges everyone to have at least one or more smoke detectors in a structure. In a 2010 a telephone survey NFPA determined that over 96% of all homes had at least one smoke detector installed. That means 4% of homes in America are unprotected by a smoke detector. While 4% may seem like a low number in actuality given the amount of buildings in America and the rate we build that number is actually very high!
Here are some facts you should know:
- Working Smoke Alarms cut the risk of dying in a reported house fire by over 50%. (NFPA)
- Between 2005-2009 38% of house fire deaths came from homes without detectors. (NFPA)
- Maintaining smoke detectors is in important as well. Between 2005-2009 over 24% of house fire deaths came from homes with smoke detectors that did not alarm during the fire. (NFPA)
- Smoke Detectors should be inspected by the home owner every year by testing the alarm.
- Smoke Detectors should be replaced every 10 years.
- Smoke Detectors are inexpensive and can be bought as cheap as $15 at a hardware store!
Carbon Monoxide Detectors, like Smoke Detectors, are very important to have in the home. Carbon Monoxide (CO2) is a tasteless and odorless gas that can be fatal when humans are exposed to it. It is nicknamed the “silent killer” and kills over 430 people a year (CDC 2014). This gas can be produced in a number of ways and can infiltrate a home with ease. Fire places, generators, vehicles, stoves, grills, or anything that uses a flame can easily produce CO2.
Signs and symptoms expected from CO2 poisoning can very person but are generally defined as: flu like but without a fever. Those affected may experience dizziness, severe headaches, nausea, sleeplessness, fatigue/weakness, and disorientation/confusion. If you experience these symptoms call 9-1-1. CO2 inhibits the your blood stream’s capacity to carry oxygen.
A Carbon Monoxide Alarm monitors the air quality in your home and alarms when CO2 levels get too high. If an CO2 alarm is going off alert 9-1-1 and exit the structure immediately. These tools like Smoke Detectors are important and can be bought very cheaply at a hardware store.