Home Safety Tips

There are currently 9 blog entries related to this category.

You would have to visit your local pharmacy or science lab to rival the number of potentially dangerous chemicals in the average home. You likely store everything from paint, fertilizers and acidic cleaners to gasoline and corrosive drain openers. 

Obviously, it makes sense to ensure that everyone in your home uses and stores such items safely.

For example, laundry detergent packs – which have become popular recently – are attractive to children. Keep them locked and out of sight. You should do the same with all laundry products. Even exposure to fabric softener pads can cause skin irritation to a child.

Always read and follow the labels on household chemical products. Use and store them as directed.

Keep corrosives, such as harsh cleaners and

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If you have young children, or expect a visit from friends or relatives with little ones in town, it pays to ensure your home is free of hazards. The last thing you want is an injury that could have easily been prevented.

Here are some basic childproofing tips.

  • Remove everything that is toxic, hot or sharp, from within reach of a child. (For example, the leaves of some types of house plants are toxic.)
  • If possible, keep children out of the kitchen while cooking.
  • Install plug-in covers in electrical outlets. (These are inexpensive and can be purchased at any hardware store.)
  • Block or gate off areas where kids may fall.
  • Remove "pulling down" hazards, such as a heavy plant that a child can pull off a table.
  • Make sure there are
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It may be a co-worker who feels slighted because of something you said at a meeting, a driver you inadvertently cut off on the way to work or a neighbour who's upset because your tree has branched too far into his yard. 

It's almost impossible to go through life -- or even a week -- without someone becoming upset with you. It happens.

So how do you deal with it?

There's an easy technique recommended by de-escalation experts called the balloon technique. It works like this:

Imagine the other person's anger is like a balloon filled with air. If you get angry back, all you're doing is adding more air to the balloon.

Instead, simply let the person vent until he has communicated his frustration completely. (If he asks questions, say you prefer to

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Gearing up for summer? Now is a great time to get your home in top shape for the months ahead. Whatever your weather, caring for your home now will help to ensure a worry-free, comfortable summer.
Follow the checklist below provided by Pillar to Post home inspectors to help you do that.

Modern Exterior by Pleasant Hill General Contractors Faust Construction   OUTDOORS

  • Inspect exterior surfaces for cracks and make any needed repairs.
  • If paint is peeling, cracking, or chipped, repair and repaint now to limit damage to the underlying materials.
  • Repair any damaged caulk around windows and doors.
  • Remove window screens and clean with a soft brush and soapy water. Repair any holes or tears or replace the screen material before
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If you have a basement, or even just a crawlspace, the last thing you want is water infiltrating the area. Even a minor leak can cause damage to walls and flooring, and may even lead to mould issues. Here are some precautions worth taking:

  • Every spring and fall, check the grading around your home. The ground should gently slope away from the foundation. Pay particular attention to areas where shrubs and other foliage make the grading difficult to see.
  • Look for cracks in the foundation. Get them fixed right away. Even a minor crack that doesn't appear to penetrate all the way through can cause problems eventually.
  • Check the caulking on basement windows. If it's worn and cracked, it's time for recaulking. The lifespan of most exterior caulking
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You have smoke detectors. Your doors have good locks. The bathtub has a slip-free pad. By all accounts, your home is a safe and secure place for your family to live.

However, there are some hazards that many homeowners don't consider or even know about. For instance:

  1. Blocked eavestroughs. Eavestroughs clogged with leaves and other debris can cause rainwater to overflow next to your foundation and create a basement leak.
  1. Clogged dryer vents. High temperature air combined with lint is a near ideal condition for a fire. Check and clear the dryer vent at least once a year.
  1. Dirty faucet heads. Kitchen and bath faucets often have built-in screens to spray the water evenly. Unfortunately, dirt and other contaminates can build up on these
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There's no doubt about it. If you want to keep your home safe from break-ins, you should have good locks an all doors and windows. An alarm system is also a good idea.

But home security doesn't end with locks and alarms. There are other less obvious ways to keep your home safe. For example:

  • Install exterior lights with a motion detection feature. A light suddenly going on will almost always send a potential intruder away.
  • Look for – and if possible eliminate – spots around your property where someone can hide.
  • Always have some lights on in your home when you're away for an evening.
  • Never announce that you're on vacation or otherwise away from your home on social media sites. (Also ask your kids not to do this!)
  • Don't leave tempting
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There are few things more traumatic than a home burglary. That's why it makes sense to invest in good locks and, if necessary, a good alarm system.

There are also ways to work with your neighbours to prevent these crimes from occurring. In fact, police say that watchful eyes are one of the best ways to deter burglars on the prowl.

Police recommend that you know the names of all the neighbours adjacent to your property. Get in the habit of watching each other's homes. Stay alert to cars and people lingering around that don't seem to belong.

Another strategy is to set up a community Facebook page. That way, when someone sees something suspicious in the neighbourhood, they can immediately notify everyone by posting a Facebook message.

Finally,

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Electricity in the home is so commonplace that it's easy to forget how dangerous it can be. According to the American Institute for Preventive Medicine, an electrical shock can knock you unconscious, cause a serious burn, or even stop your heartbeat.

Fortunately, there are some simple things you can do to reduce the risk.

  • Install safety plugs in outlets that young children can reach.
  • Never plug in anything with a frayed or otherwise damaged power cord.
  • Never use a plugged-in computer, hair dryer, or other electrically-powered item near a filled sink or bathtub. This includes phones with power cords.
  • Never touch anything electrical with wet hands or while standing in water. (Water is a remarkably efficient conductor of electricity.)
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