Five Minutes or Less for Health Weekly Tip: Make Your Home Safer

make your hone saferHousing conditions can significantly affect your health and safety. Take a few minutes to make your home healthy and safe.

  • Remove hazards that increase the chance for falling, such as rugs, loose cords, and objects on the floor.
  • Check or change the batteries on your carbon monoxide alarm at least twice a year.
  • Test smoke alarms monthly to ensure they work properly. For smoke alarms that use regular alkaline batteries, replace the batteries at least once a year. For smoke alarms that use lithium (long-life) batteries, replace the entire alarm unit every 10 years or sooner if it chirps or stops working.
  • Keep cooking areas free of flammable objects, such as potholders and towels.
  • Keep candles, medicine, household cleaners, and other chemicals out of children’s reach, in locked or child-proof cabinets.
  • Don’t use a gasoline or charcoal-burning device near a window, door, or vent, or inside your home, basement, or garage.
  • Test your home for radon (a radioactive gas linked to lung cancer). You can purchase a kit at your local hardware or home improvement store. If testing shows levels higher than 4 pCi/L, seal or vent your basement, and monitor your radon levels to make sure they lessen.
  • Make your home smoke-free.
  • Keep medicines in their original bottles or containers.

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Page last reviewed: June 2, 2015