TW Systems News Blog

Give Life Saving Holiday Gifts

Posted on December 12, 2012 by Wright

Give a life saving giftNeed a gift for the person who has it all?  Looking for a last minute or unique gift for a family member, friend, co-worker? Be a lifesaver and show how much you care by giving a gift that saves lives such as…

Smoke Alarms – Properly installed and maintained smoke alarms save lives, minimize property damage, and prevent injuries. There are two types of smoke alarms: 1) Photoelectric sensing which detects visible fire particles that are usually associated with a smoldering fire, and 2) Ionization sensing which detects invisible fire particles. Both are effective in detecting fire. However, the Ionization detects particles sooner than the Photoelectric. Ideally, both types should be on each floor of a home with more than one on a floor if it’s a larger home.

Carbon Monoxide (CO) Detectors – If someone you know utilizes such fuels as gasoline, oil, wood, or propane in their home then this would be an invaluable gift! Because carbon monoxide is odorless, tasteless, and invisible, it is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths in the US. A CO detector is the only way to know if it is in a structure. Here are some important features to look for when considering a CO detector: 1) An electrochemical sensor is more stable in humid areas and/or areas with fluctuating temperatures. It also has less false alarms due to regular household chemicals and 2) A built-in feature that alerts you when the CO detector is at the “end of its life” and needs to be replaced.

Fire Extinguishers – Residential fire extinguishers can be found in stores such as Home Depot, Lowes, Ace Hardware, etc. Determining which extinguisher to purchase is as easy as A, B, and C… because there are three classes of fires. Class A extinguishers put our ordinary combustibles such as wood and paper. Class B extinguishers are used on fires involving flammable liquids such as gasoline, kerosene, paint, oil, and even kitchen grease. Class C extinguishers are used in fires involving electrical equipment or wires. Today, many extinguishers have multi-class ratings and are labeled with designations such as A-B, B-C, or A-B-C. If you do not purchase a multi-purchase extinguisher such as A-B-C, then make sure you purchase the type of extinguisher for the applicable room such as Class B for the kitchen or garage, or Class A for rooms with a fireplace. Whereas older labels used to show letters, newer labeling shows pictures of what the extinguisher can extinguish.

New multi-use fire extinguisher label

New multi-use fire extinguisher label


Portable Escape Ladders – When deciding what escape ladder to purchase look for one that… 1) is long enough to reach the ground level of the home in which will be used, 2) light enough for a child to pick up and put over the window sill, and 3) strong enough to hold the weight of the heaviest person in the home. Additionally, there should be an escape ladder in every room above the ground floor level. If the ground floor level is on a slope, then those rooms over looking the sloped area of the land should have escape ladders.

As an added bonus to the above gift, add a Gift Certificate for the installation of the smoke alarm and/or carbon monoxide detector.

Two other things… 1) make sure that any smoke alarm, CO detector, and/or fire extinguisher meets the strict standards set by Underwriters Laboratories (UL), and 2) while you’re at it, pick up one or all of these for yourself as well!

TW Systems is happy to answer any questions concerning this article. We also offer installation services for smoke alarms and CO detectors. Call us to day!