Home is a safe haven for your family. That’s why it’s called “home sweet home”. Yet there are things that can become silent killers in your safe haven. Quality custom home builders in Houston know that watching for these 4 dangers can keep you happy and healthy whether you have an older home or a new home. Below are four deadly dangers to make sure you do not have in your home sweet home.
1. Plants in Your Garden
Although it can be a peaceful place, your garden can also have unseen dangers, especially for kids or curious pets. There are many garden plants that are quite toxic and absolutely deadly. Here are some to be aware of:
Castor bean plants – A common favorite plant, however the beans of this plant contain enough of the poison ricin to be fatal for a small child.
Water hemlock – A very deadly plant. It looks like a common weed but can be mistaken for something edible like water cress or wild carrots.
Common Lily – Be careful of your playful feline attacking this plant, as a few bites could be enough to be fatal to your loved pet.
2. Open Pools of Water
One of the leading causes of fatalities for small children is drowning in a backyard pool. Although wonderful and fun for hot summer days, open pools are deadly. If you have a pool, consider installing a child-proof fence with a gate all the way around it and set up rules that no one is allowed to use the pool without supervision.
Not just big pools should be supervised, though. Small wading pools pose a danger even with small amounts of water and should never be left unattended during play. For owners of portable pools, make sure you monitor play and then drain the water when play time is over.
3. Outdated Wiring
Older homes are charming and unique. Yet they also can harbor hazards in their antique walls. In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s knob-and-tube wiring was a typical system for household electricity. It included cloth and rubber insulation around the wiring. Over time, the insulation becomes brittle and dry which can easily expose the bare wires. This problem was seen a lot in basements, crawl places and wherever there were wires out in the open. You should get your home checked for this old wiring if your home is older than the 1940. Upgrading your home’s wiring system may be costly, however, potentially saving lives from an electrical house fire would be well worth it.
4. Poison Gases
Nearly one home in 15 in the United States is affected by poison gasses. You may not even know, but is the 2nd leading cause of lung cancer.
Radon – This odorless and colorless gas is potentially deadly. It can seep up from the ground into cracks in your foundation when naturally existing uranium corrodes. The well insulated homes of today can allow this gas to build to possible toxic levels. For around $15, you can get a radon alarm and install it in your basement. Call a contractor and have him seal up any cracks in your foundation and put in a ventilation system to keep the gas from building up.
Carbon Monoxide – This gas is the cause of more than 400 fatalities every year in the United States. It comes from burning fossil fuels, and may be caused by a poor performing ventilated gas powered generator or barbecue. A simple alarm can save lives by warning you if there is carbon monoxide build up. If your alarm goes off, try not to be frightened, simply open windows for ventilation and quickly exit your home and call 911.