The U.S. Fire Administration reports that fires kill more than 4,000 Americans annually and injure 20,000 more. U.S. fire departments respond to nearly 2 million fires each year, with three-quarters of them occurring in residences. In order to avoid becoming one more of these unfortunate statistics, the NFPA recommends that every family implement the following safety procedures:
- Draw a map of your home with all members of your household, marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.
- Practice a home fire drill twice a year. Conduct one at night and one during the day with everyone in your home, and practice using different ways out.
- Teach children how to escape on their own, in case you can’t help them.
- Make sure the number of your home is clearly marked, and easy for the fire department to find.
- Close doors behind you as you leave—this may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire.
- Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.
Additionally, how long has it been since you’ve conducted a safety inspection of your home? Here’s a quick checklist:
- Replace the batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors regularly. Test them at least once a month.
- Keep a fully-charged fire extinguisher in an easy-to-get-to spot.
- Don’t overload circuits or extension cords.
- Make sure there’s ample space around all portable heating units. Anything that could catch fire should be at least three feet away from these.
- Position appliances (TV sets, kitchen and other appliances) away from curtains and water sources.
- Clean your dryer’s lint filter after every use and check behind your dryer for lint build-up regularly.
Most items on the standard home fire safety checklist are relatively easy for anyone to implement. But for those that may present more of a challenge—installing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, chimney cleanings or the maintenance or replacement of wood stoves, to name a few—remember that your local Handyman Matters craftsmen stand ready to assist you in making certain that your home is fire prevention-ready!
Human beings are not only creatures of habit, we tend to be an extremely adaptable species. For proof, look no further than your own house.
The odds are there are several small items in need of repair that you have put off fixing, and in the process, you’ve learned to work around the inconvenience they present. In fact, you’ve put up with the situation so long that, most of the time, it doesn’t even seem like a problem any longer. For example:
- The wobbly towel rack that’s worked its way loose from the wall
- The warped drawer that’s difficult to open or close
- The sliding shower door that’s come off of its track
- The ripped screen in the screen door
- The cracked floor tile in the entryway
- The “ding” in the wall caused when a piece of furniture banged against it
Without even thinking about it, you’ve become accustomed to stepping over or around the cracked tile. You brace yourself in order to tug extra hard when you need to open the drawer. You’ve stopped using the wobbly towel rack altogether. You’ve moved a chair in order to conceal the damage to the wall.
You’ve told yourself that any one of these jobs is just too small to worry about right now. You’ll get around to fixing all of them one of these days. But more days go by, and instead, the list has just gotten larger. You could probably go along like this for quite a while, finding new ways to live with the problems. But, as with so many things in life, these situations don’t go away, or get better on their own. It’s time to address them head-on. You either need to set aside the time to handle the repairs on your own, or call in an expert.
That’s where Handyman Matters can come in, well… handy. Their qualified craftsmen can handle more 1,162 home repair projects, large and small. You tend to consider calling in an expert when you have one big job that needs fixing. But why not bring in someone to tackle the half-dozen or more “honey-do” items that have been stacking up around your house? In a single visit, a Handyman Matters craftsman can address the many little and mid-sized repair projects that have disrupted the orderly flow of life around your home.
Call 1(800)FIX-MY-HOME or go to www.handymanmatters.com where you can enter your zip code to find the phone number of the office that serves your area.