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  • Inexpensive DIY Projects for a Healthier, Safer Home

    Protect your family with these easy home improvement ideas.

    Home is our safe haven—or at least it should be. A few easy DIY projects can help you make your house safer and healthier for the whole family. We asked Danny Lipford, host of the nationally syndicated show, “Today’s Homeowner,” to share his favorite ideas for ensuring our homes are the safety zone we want them to be. Best of all, you can conquer the entire list for about $200!

    • Secure heavy furniture and appliances:

      Protect your family and guests (especially kids) by using furniture brackets or straps to secure bookshelves, flat-screen TVs, dressers and other easily toppled home furnishings to the wall.

      Estimated cost: $10 and up, depending on amount needed

    • Get smart about smoke detectors:

      Does your home have enough smoke detectors? There should be a smoke detector on each floor (including the basement) and in or near every bedroom in the home. Mount new detectors on the ceiling, not more than 12 inches from the wall. For pitched ceilings, install the alarm at least four inches down from the peak.

      Estimated cost: $30

    • Install carbon monoxide alarms:

      This odorless, colorless, poisonous gas is a result of improperly vented or defective home systems, such as heaters, furnaces and fireplaces. Since carbon monoxide doesn’t rise to the ceiling like smoke, alarms can be plugged into wall outlets or affixed to walls and powered by batteries.

      Estimated cost: $50

    • Treat and beat bathroom condensation:

      Poor ventilation in the bathroom can lead to a build-up of excess moisture—and that can lead to a host of problems, including mold and mildew. Install a bathroom vent fan to push the moist air outside the home and prevent fogged-up windows, steamy mirrors and long-term damage to walls and ceilings. Even better, today’s models are whisper-quiet. If you don’t have a lot of experience with DIY home projects, this might be a good job for your local home maintenance service provider.

      Estimated cost: $100