We're going to show you ways to help make your home safe and sound!
Deterring unwanted intruders
All exterior doors should be fitted with deadlocks. Make sure that the one you choose has safety release so that you can't accidentally lock yourself in. For added personal security, spy holes and door guards allow you to screen your visitors.
You should also make sure every window is fitted with a window lock, there are many varieties to choose from to suit all sorts of windows. Don't forget about side gates, tool shes and garages. It is important to make sure that any tools and implements such as ladders that may assist a burglar to get into your house are securely locked away.
A good, secure padlock is ideal for a garden shed or gate. Make sure the padlock is rated to suit your application. It is also advisable to change or re-key all the locks when you move into a new house.
Security doors & window grilles
Reinforced security doors and window grilles afford a high level of security, particularly the types which have bolts that extend into the door or window frame when locked. They are an excellent visual as well as physical deterrent to would-be burglars. The other great advantage of security doors and window grilles is that you can open your house up to the fresh air and breezes safe in the knowledge that your is secure from unwanted intruders.
Unauthorized entry to houses often happens when someone leaves a window or door ajar for their dog or cat to come in and out. A far safer idea is to install dog of cat flaps. This means you can securely lock your house and your four-legged friends can come and go as they please.
Exterior flood lamps that are activated by motion are a great safety and security measure. Not only do they light the way when you come home after dark, they are a welcoming light when someone comes to you door at night - and you can see who is there. Placed strategically around your houses, motion senor flood lamps will alert you is any unwanted intruders are prowling around, as well as providing a deterrent.
There are a range of different plug-in timer switches that can turn lights on and off or even appliances on and off such as the TV, so that it appears to the casual observer that someone is home.
Alarm systems range from simple DIY window, door and sensor alarms that emit a loud, high-pitched noise when activated to systems with cameras and systems that are connected to a base station. For the elderly or people with medical conditions, there are systems that combine home security with medical emergency assistance.
Safety inside your home
Over 60% of fires in the home occur at night when people are most likely to be asleep. You cannot rely on your sense of smell to wake you up. Smoke alarms are an essential part of household safety. Battery operated models are inexpensive and easy to install. For complete protection, you need to have several alarms installed throughout home - particularly near all bedrooms. Remember to test your smoke alarms regularly. Some smoke alarms feature a battery level touch test device to ensure batteries are still operational. Other models emit an intermittent tone when their batteries are low.
Fire extinguishers are filled with different substances suited to different types of fires including electrical, chemical, oil, wood and paper. Dry powder extinguishes are useful for all types of fires. You can choose between refillable or disposable fire extinguisher. Disposable extinguishers can only be used once before being discarded. Refillable extinguishers must be checked and serviced annually by a fire service organisation to maintain correct pressure and quality seals.
It's also a good idea to rehearse a fire drill with your family - particularly children. Make sure they know to keep low and where the nearest exit is to their bedroom. If you have deadlocks fitted, make they are the types with a safety release, so that you minimize the chance of being locked in.
There is a range of safety products, some of which you can install yourself, that will protect your family and your valuable equipment from electrical damage. Safety switches monitor the power flow into the circuit through an active wire and back through a neutral wire to detect any imbalance. Any imbalance will cause the safety switch to disconnect the power in one thrifty thousandth of a second. Safety switches can be switchboard mounted or built into power points. There are also portable switches on a portable power board, and in the form of a plug top which is built into the plus of an appliance. With the exception of portable safety switches, a license electrician must fit all safety switches.
Safety or Nursery plugs are small plastic covers that fit into power points which are not being used to prevent children from pushing things into them. They are designed to be difficult for children to remove.
Electrical surges can instantly damage electronic equipment, but you can protect your valuable appliances with surge protection products.
Most accidents that happen to children happen in the home. Happily, there are a number of products that you can install simply and easily in your home to minimize the risk of injury.
Hot water burns are a major cause of injury to small children. The simplest way to avoid this is to turn the thermostat of your hot water down to between 50 and 55c. Alternatively, you can have anti-scald fittings attached to the the back which slows dangerously hot water to a trickle. Another good idea for the bath are anti-slip adhesive patches and tap protectors in case they slip and fall - they won't injure themselves on the sharp edges of the tap.
Cupboard and door latches are easy to fit an ensure that toddlers and small children don't find their way into places they shouldn't - particularly laundry and bathroom cupboards - to say nothing of your best crockery or glassware.
Always try to dress children in low risk fire clothing. Teach children to 'stop, drop and roll' if their clothing catches dire. Tell them to keep rolling until all flames are extinguished.