5 Essential Winter Home Safety Checks

(BPT) – Home fires, carbon monoxide poisonings and home break-ins tend to increase during the winter months. If you’re aware of the increase in dangers to your home during the cold-weather season, you have the power to take precautions. Now is the perfect time for you and your family to review a few essential home safety checks.

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If you plan on hosting a family gathering, or are going to be traveling and away from your home, these safety tips can give you the peace of mind you need to enjoy the season and ensure that your home is both safe and secure.

Tip 1: Install and update alerts – If you haven’t found time to replace the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors recently, then be sure to do so now. If the batteries are in good order, check that each detector is working by pressing the test button monthly. You should have detectors in every bedroom in the house, as well as one on each floor according to the National Fire Protection Association.

Tip 2: Get smart, get safe – When you’re not home, who’s watching it for you? If the answer is no one, it could be an issue if your alarms go off, your kids forget their keys, you are expecting a delivery or even if there’s a break in. With a system like ADT Pulse, users can keep an eye on their home no matter where they are, as well as unlock doors, view real-time camera footage and remotely disable alarms. Plus, with 24/7 monitoring, homeowners can rest assured knowing that, if their home or family is in danger, ADT can automatically dispatch assistance and send alerts.

Tip 3: Practice safe heating practices – When the temperatures drop, it’s easy to resort to quick fixes like space heaters to keep warm. Avoid the fire risk altogether by choosing safer routes. Those include turning up the temperature on your furnace, wearing heavier layers of clothing or switching on your fireplace. Space heaters can be used, but should be placed in the middle of a room and far away from any fabric items like rugs, curtains or furniture. Also, be sure to never leave a space heater unattended.

Tip 4: Set up a safety plan – Establish a family safety plan so everyone knows how to act and where to go during a time of emergency. For example, discuss when it’s appropriate – and safe – to call 911, plan and review safe evacuation routes for every room in the house and pick a location where the family should meet outside the home in case of a fire or carbon monoxide alarms sounding.

Tip 5: Make the home look lived in – Whether it’s shoveling snow, picking up newspapers, or keeping your front lights lit, a home that looks lived in is a deterrent for thieves. If you have travel plans this winter, ask neighbors or nearby relatives to take care of light maintenance on the property, and to make sure packages and mail are brought inside and waste bins are not left by the curb.

Awareness is the key to making your home more safe this winter. With this awareness, you can take precautions to help protect your home and family. For additional safety tips and to learn about ADT Pulse, visit www.ADT.com.

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