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Safety alarm type products good for the home protect against a variety of dangers. The most common, even required in most areas of the U.S., are smoke alarms. At a minimum, you should have at least one smoke alarm for each floor of your home. They should be installed in a central area of your house on every floor. If your home is extremely large, consider installing two alarms on floors that have large square footage or where there are large distances from the ends of the floor.
Carbon monoxide detectors that look much like smoke alarms are now recommended, if not required, in the U.S. In most smaller and normal sized houses, one should be sufficient. Install it near the interior basement entry point in your home since most threats of this silent killer will come from below ground. In a larger home that might have two interior basement entry points, a carbon monoxide unit should be installed at each location.
Perimeter alarms have become very popular in recent years and are available in all price ranges. A low cost system might involve a few self-installed motion detectors and an electronic key pad to arm/disarm the system based on a code you select. If you want high-level protection, you could move all the way to wired window and door contacts with a complement of motion detectors, including an electronic key pad digitally linked to a 24/7 monitoring firm. With this level of protection, your monitoring organization will dispatch its own personnel or the local police whenever a break in security is recorded. Always remember there is no “perfect” system. Do not ever feel totally protected and always be attentive and aware of possible in home threats.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|