Why Offer Your Customers Home Safety Products?
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there were 1,338,500 reported fires in the U.S. in 2020. These fires led to 3500 deaths, 15,200 injuries, and nearly $22 billion in property damage. Unfortunately, it is sadly often the case in these situations that people did not have access to, or properly working, fire safety equipment in their homes.
Most residential fires start in the kitchen – an article found on The Zebra states that half of all fires are a result of cooking, while the other top three include heating equipment malfunction (this includes fireplaces, space heaters, and portable heaters) and electrical malfunction. With fire causing so much death, injury, and destruction of property, it’s vital that consumers have access to quality home safety equipment.
How can you as an HVAC professional help your customers get the safety equipment they need? Keep reading to learn more!
What are some types of home safety devices and how do they operate?
Let’s start by talking about safety equipment that all homeowners should have in their home. While there are other important types of equipment available, such as escape ladders, leak detectors, and air quality monitors, for the purposes of this article we’ll focus on the three most crucial types of home safety equipment, how they operate, and how often they should be replaced.
Smoke alarms are vital when it comes to home safety, so much so that most municipal building codes require them for homes, businesses, and rental properties. In general, there are two types off smoke detectors available – ionization and photoelectric. According to leading fire safety product manufacturer Kidde, ionization sensing alarms detect the invisible particles often associated with fast-flaming fires first. Photoelectric alarms, on the other hand, first identify fire particles associated with slow, smoldering fires. Both types effectively detect either type of fire.
Smoke detectors are also one of the least expensive ways to help prevent injury and death by house fire. Offering smoke alarms to your customers and properly installing them not only keeps your customers safe – it also shows them you care about their well-being. Not to mention, there are quality smoke alarms available today that can fit most budgets. Most smoke alarms range from $10 to $40, so you should be able to find the right fit for any customer.
Fire extinguishers are an effective way for customers to put out small, contained fires and help them from spreading to other parts of the home. When offering fire extinguishers to your customers, you should make sure they are aware they are only one safety layer should a fire occur. According to Kidde, they should also make sure all residents of the home have been safely evacuated, the fire department has been notified, and there is a clear exit for the person using the extinguisher.
It is recommended that your customers have a fire extinguisher within easy reach on each floor of their home. They may also want to keep an extinguisher in these locations:
• Laundry Room
• Hobby Room (if heating appliances or flame is used)
Like smoke alarms and CO detectors, you will want to recommend that customers replace fire extinguishers every 10 years.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Carbon monoxide, or CO, is a colorless, odorless gas. It’s also deadly, and is known as the silent killer because it can fill up your customer’s home without them even knowing it. Symptoms of CO poisoning include headache, nausea, increased heart rate, and loss of consciousness. CO is produced in several ways, but ultimately, where there is fire, there is carbon monoxide – from vehicles and gas grills, to any fuel-burning heating equipment.
Carbon monoxide detectors sense the presence of CO in a home’s air while giving your customer time to respond before the situation becomes hazardous. If your customer’s alarm goes off, it should not be ignored. Let them know they should get their family out of the home, even if no one is experiencing symptoms of CO poisoning, and call the fire department.
When is a good time to talk to my customers about home safety products?
Of course, you’ll want to let your customers know that you can provide them with home safety devices like smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors, and fire extinguishers. A great time to do this is when you visit them for their annual maintenance, both in the spring and fall.
Fall maintenance is actually an optimal time to mention that you can offer them quality Kidde products because National Fire Prevention Week is in October. It’s also a good idea to remind your customers during their fall maintenance visit that they should check the batteries in their fire and carbon monoxide detectors, and any detectors more than 10 years old should be replaced.
Where can I find the best home safety product lineup?
At Replacement Components, we understand that there’s more to your business than providing parts, equipment and service to keep people comfortable. Safety is critical, too.
That’s why we offer smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and fire extinguishers from Kidde, one of the most trusted brands in the industry. And we’re proud to announce that we’ve expanded our Kidde lineup to meet specific needs, and give you opportunities for add-on sales.
When it comes to smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, whether residential or commercial, single detectors or combo units, hardwired, plug-in or battery powered, we have the right options for you. And, we now offer even more 10-year battery models, which are now required by law in many states and municipalities.
Our expanded Kidde fire extinguisher offerings include rechargeable and non-rechargeable models and multi-purpose dry chemical, water, wet chemical, and carbon dioxide clean agent options. And we have extinguishers in a variety of sizes and weights suitable for residential and industrial use, as well as for special applications like commercial kitchens.
You do more than provide your customers with heating, cooling and refrigeration solutions. That’s why Replacement Components is pleased to provide you with the safety products your customers need. When you recommend them with every job, you’re offering peace of mind – and earning money in the process.
You can find all the options, with quick reference guides for easy ordering, when you visit the Kidde section of our website.