Tips for DST: Change your clocks, change your batteries

As we get ready to spring forward on March 8, help your readers prepare for more than just changing their clocks. Daylight Saving Time serves as an ideal time to also change alarm batteries. Below are additional, easy tips to help keep your homes and families safe from the threats of smoke, fire and carbon monoxide (CO):

Update alarms

Most CO alarms should be replaced every five to seven years and smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. If you don’t know how old an alarm is, the safest bet is to replace it immediately. Consider upgrading to 10-year battery models, such as the First Alert 10-Year Smoke and CO Alarm, which offers dual protection and eliminates the need to replace the batteries every six months.

Equip your home with the recommended number of smoke and CO alarms

The National Fire Protection Association suggests having at least one CO alarm on each level of the home, including the basement, and one in or near every bedroom. For smoke alarms, homes should have one installed on every level and inside each bedroom.

Test alarms to ensure they are in proper working condition

Daylight Saving Time isn’t the only time of year that you should check alarms! All alarms should be tested at least every month.

Ensure alarms are audible

Make certain each person can hear the smoke and CO alarms sound from his or her sleeping room and that the sound is loud enough to awaken everyone.

Practice a fire escape plan

According to a survey, only 56 per cent of Canadians report having a home escape plan. Moreover, four in five have never practiced it. After planning an emergency escape route, practice it at least twice a year with your entire family.

—For First Alert


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