It's important to keep in mind that a smoke alarm will not notify the necessary emergency teams that a fire has broken out. Its purpose, rather, is to notify you and anyone else in the vicinity that there is smoke — and possibly a fire — in the building so you can evacuate if necessary. The Home Depot explains there are two types of smoke sensors: photoelectric detectors and ionization detectors. Because the technology makes each of these better at detecting different types of fires, either purchase both types of devices or purchase a device that includes both sensors. Before purchasing a smoke alarm, check with your insurance company to see if it requires the alarm to have any specific certifications. Once you have selected the alarm you want, follow the manufacturer's instructions to ensure you install it correctly. Safe At Home advises placing a smoke alarm on every floor and to ensure you install them on the ceiling or high on the walls, since smoke rises.
Safe At Home reveals that carbon monoxide is the number one cause of accidental poisoning death in North America. It is produced by appliances that run on fossil fuels, as well as cars, gas or oil furnaces and fireplaces. And because it's colourless, tasteless and odourless, it can quickly become deadly. Unlike smoke alarms, which simply ring if smoke is detected, carbon monoxide alarms provide an ongoing digital readout so you can see at a glance what the levels are in your home and know of any dangers sooner rather than later. The Home Depot recommends placing carbon monoxide detectors 15 feet away from oil or gas appliances to get a more accurate reading, and placing them in an area where the digital reading can be easily seen. Install one on every floor, and ensure a detector is near all sleeping areas. Be sure to read the manufacturer's manual and warnings so you know how best to install it, when it will need to be replaced, etc.
Unfortunately keys go only so far when it comes to protecting you, your home and your loved ones. If you want to add an extra layer of safety, think about getting a home alarm system. There are many alarm companies in Canada offering different types of services at differing prices. Some have motion sensors, while others can detect when the phone lines have been cut or a forced entry is suspected. The peace of mind that can be offered by knowing your home is under 24-hour monitoring can be very satisfying, so consider meeting with a few companies, such as Protectron, AlarmForce or Home Protection Plus, to find the right plan and system for you.
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