Safety is always be an issue when moving into an unfamiliar home. Put safety at the top of your mind; then go take a walk through the home. If you have children in the home, this is critical!
Listed below are a few items to look for.
1. Cap any uncapped gas lines that are not being used. If you have a gas line at your fireplace, do not leave the key in the shut off valve.
2. Exposed electrical wires are not acceptable.
3. Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters save lives. Make sure they are installed in all of the appropriate areas and work properly.
4. Check for sturdy railings at stairs and balconies
5. The oven should be secured to the floor or counter top.
6. If the chimney is dirty, have it cleaned before using it.
7. If there is an appliance in the garage such as a water heater, it should be raised up off the garage floor by at least 18″.
8. If there are doors leading into the attic from a child’s room, they should be locked.
9. Replace the batteries in the smoke detectors upon moving in. Make sure they work!
10. If the furnace has a standing pilot light, have the unit inspected and serviced by a licensed HVAC contractor at least once a year. There is always a possibility of a cracked heat exchanger with these units. Damaged heat exchangers will allow dangerous combustible gases to enter the home. Be sure to turn the pilot light off in the seasons that the furnace is not being used. This will help to prolong the life of the heat exchanger.
While there is obviously no way of compiling a list of every possible safety hazard in the home, these 10 items will certainly be important to any home owner.
U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission http://www.cpsc.gov/