Keeping your Family Safe with First Alert

Keeping our family safe is obviously a priority! When we become parents we spend most of our time worrying about our children and how we can keep them safe. It is like someone flicked a switch and suddenly our priorities and thoughts change and we solely focus on these smaller versions of ourselves.

A few years back I was watching the evening news with my husband. It was very sad as a local family had a fire and lost everything. The next day I went out and made sure all of my family had smoke detectors and those who did not, got them for gifts. The following years I saw something tragic on the news about a family not having carbon monoxide detectors. Immediately I rushed out and bought one for myself, my parents and my sister. They may have laughed at me at the time, but have thanked me many times since. My dad says it was the best gift he ever received.

Ensuring my family is prepared and safe is always on my mind. A recent survey reveals many Canadians are not prepared and lack the knowledge needed for fire prevention. It is important to have functioning smoke detectors and Carbon Monoxide detectors on each floor of your home. You should also have them inside bedrooms and test them regularly. It is recommended you replace these detectors every 10 years. Quite often Canadians do not have enough detectors in their home and they do not test them enough. Batteries should be replaced every six months. I change mine when I change my clocks twice a year. It makes it an easy way to remember.

We have a family fire escape route plan in place in case of a fire. Our kids know how to get out of the house and where to meet us if this happens. It gives me peace of mind being prepared and knowing my family will be alerted if there is an emergency. It is important every family creates a family fire escape route and practices it often.

First Alert is a big part of our emergency plan and having detectors throughout my home allows me to sleep better at night and travel worry free. First Alert has a great selection of Smoke & Fire detectors for your home as well as Carbon Monoxide detectors.

Often called the invisible killer, carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless, colorless gas created when fuels (such as gasoline, wood, coal, natural gas, propane, oil, and methane) burn incompletely. In the home, heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel can be sources of carbon monoxide.

• CO alarms should be installed in a central location outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home and in other locations where required by applicable laws, codes or standards. For the best protection, interconnect all CO alarms throughout the home. When one sounds, they all sound.
• Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for placement and mounting height.
• Choose a CO alarm that is listed by a qualified testing laboratory.
• Call your local fire department’s non-emergency number to find out what number to call if the CO alarm sounds.
• Test CO alarms at least once a month; replace them according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
• If the audible trouble signal sounds, check for low batteries.
If the battery is low, replace it. If it still sounds, call the fire department.
• If the CO alarm sounds, immediately move to a fresh air location outdoors or by an open window or door. Make sure everyone inside the home is accounted for. Call for help from a fresh air location and stay there until emergency personnel declare that it is safe to re-enter the home.
• If you need to warm a vehicle, remove it from the garage immediately after starting it. Do not run a vehicle or other fueled engine or motor indoors, even if garage doors are open. Make sure the exhaust pipe of a running vehicle is not covered with snow.
• During and after a snowstorm, make sure vents for the dryer, furnace, stove, and fireplace are clear of snow build-up.
• A generator should be used in a well-ventilated location outdoors away from windows, doors and vent openings.
• Gas or charcoal grills can produce CO — only use outside.

Smoke alarms are a key part of a home fire escape plan. When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast. Working smoke alarms give you early warning so you can get outside quickly.

• Install smoke alarms in every bedroom. They should also be outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. Install alarms in the basement.
• Large homes may need extra smoke alarms.
• It is best to use interconnected smoke alarms. When one smoke alarm sounds, they all sound.
• Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.
• There are two kinds of alarms. Ionization smoke alarms are quicker to warn about flaming fires.
Photoelectric alarms are quicker to warn about smoldering fires. It is best to use both types of alarms in the home.
• A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on a wall. Keep smoke alarms away from the kitchen to reduce false alarms. They should be
at least 10 feet (3 meters) from the stove.
• People who are hard-of-hearing or deaf can use special alarms. These alarms have strobe lights and bed shakers.
• Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

For more information and to find the products right for you, check out First Alert



Disclosure-This post has been brought to you by First Alert. As always, all opinions are my own 


  1. My hubby is a fire fighter, so he is on top of our smoke detectors. It is SO important that people check theirs regularly.

  2. First Alert is a great brand! They are exceptionally reliable, and that is so key with any kind of detector.

  3. This reminds me, I really need to get more than one detector for our house. I also need to change out the batteries in the one we currently do have.

  4. I know I am so bad about checking my detectors and we never made any escape or disaster plans. These posts are a real wake up call and will remind me to check all our systems before the problem comes.

  5. My mom’s condo complex burn to the ground a few years ago. Luckily everyone made it out safely. They had an industrial alarm system. Once that happened, my daughter went around our house and checked every one of our smoke detectors.

  6. I didn’t know you could get alarms with strobe lights and bed shakers, that would be perfect for my Grandpa. This reminds me that I need to change the batteries on ours!

  7. These are excellent tips. First Alert is a brand we are also familiar with. My husband – the tallest member of my family tests ours often and if he doesn’t then I climb up on a chair and check them. We actually had a friend who was a captain of the firefighters here in town and one day they were going door to door literally reminding people to check. I thought that was brilliant!!

  8. We have smoke detectors, but no carbon monoxide detectors…I need to get a couple tomorrow, thank you for this reminder!

  9. We need to do this — a few months ago our batteries died in one of our smoke detectors. I’ll be changing that now and also getting a carbon monoxide detector.

  10. This sounds like a great product. Sounds like something that I may need for our home. I think it’s great to keep family protected as much as possible.

  11. We have these smoke alarms too! They are super cool and way more updated versus the cheap ones we had.

  12. I didn’t realize there should be a smoke alarm in every bedroom. We need to get on top of that right away. I like to feel like my family is as safe as we can make them

  13. So important to have those installed! We have a smoke detectors and a carbon monoxide detector. My husband is a fire fighter / paramedic and he’s seen way too much to not have the right stuff in place.

  14. These alarms are so important! We always make sure to check the battery level on a regular basis. I would want to go without these alarms.

  15. Reesa Lewandowski says

    I really need to upgrade our alert systems! Thank you for these tips!

  16. I just moved into my first house with gas, and I have to admit, I get worried about carbon monoxide. I installed a detector before we moved in.

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