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The Shawnee News-Star
Managing your daily tasks and home with ease
Stop the Chirping!!
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About this blog
By Sonya McDaniel
OSU Cooperative Extension has great tips for homeowners to make their house a safe, healthy and stress-free environment. Of course, the information provided is based on reliable research which is proven to be effective and safe.

Sonya ...
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The Everyday Home
OSU Cooperative Extension has great tips for homeowners to make their house a safe, healthy and stress-free environment. Of course, the information provided is based on reliable research which is proven to be effective and safe.

Sonya McDaniel is the Family and Consumer Science Extension Educator for Pottawatomie County. Her job is to deliver information over basic home economic skills to the public. She has 15 years of experience in teaching basic family relations, nutrition and meal planning, family budgeting and household management through the OSU system.

She owns a small farming operation with her husband in southern Pottawatomie County where they raise hair sheep, goats and cattle. They are busy keeping up with an on-the-go child, 5 dogs and one giant cat. Sonya definitely understands that running a home and family takes thought, time and money which all seem to be in limited supply!

Oklahoma Cooperative Extension service does not discriminate because of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, or status as a Vietnam-era veteran and is an equal opportunity employer.

Email: sonya.mcdaniel@okstate.edu

Website: www.oces.okstate.edu/pottawatomie

Facebook: Pottawatomie County OSU Extension
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By Sonya McDaniel
March 8, 2013 12:01 a.m.


It’s that time of year!  This Sunday, March 10, is time for us to “Spring Forward”, which also means it’s time to change the batteries in all of your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.  Everyone should test their alarms and detectors once a month, but it is very important to change the batteries once a year.  It could save a life according to the Safe Kids Coalition!
In fact, having a working smoke alarm reduces a person's chance of dying in a fire by half.
Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of your home, outside every sleeping area, and in every bedroom. Smoke alarms should be mounted high on walls or ceilings.  Carbon Monoxide detectors should be in homes which use propane or natural gas, and should be placed near or in rooms where gas appliances are located.
Even if your smoke alarms are hardwired, replace the batteries in case of a chirping sound or a power outage.  Remember there are high risks of fire or carbon monoxide poisoning when the power goes out and you are using alternative heating/lighting sources (candles, lamps, propane heat, etc.)  
Reminder: Smoke alarms and detectors do not last forever!  The maximum life span is 8-10 years. After that time, the entire unit should be replaced. If the unit does not respond properly when tested, it should be replaced immediately.
This experience just happened at my house this week.  Our carbon monoxide detector started chirping, and didn’t stop even after new batteries were installed.  My husband then noticed some messages on the back which told us “this device will beep every 30 seconds without stopping after the device had been installed for 7 years.  Replace the unit”.  Sure enough, we installed that device not long after we moved into our home seven years ago in February! 
Alarms and detectors are a small price to pay for the safety of your family.  Don’t forget to properly maintain them so they work correctly.  If you are unable to safely check or install your smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detectors, contact your local Fire Department and they are able to provide this service for you.  They would rather come see you without their sirens going, I can assure you!!      

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