The way that we build our homes, with synthetic materials, furniture, and cheaper construction is making our homes more flammable – House fires spread 600% faster today than 40 years ago, according to the National Institute of Standards and Technology. This means that every second counts.
And while most us have some warning system: smoke detectors, and maybe even fire suppression systems built into our homes, there is a very easy way to help slow the spread of fire in your home: closing your door.
Research by the UL Fire Safety Research Institute concluded that closed doors do a number of things including:
- A closed door can help keep back heat and prevent rooms reaching dangerous temperatures.
- A closed door keeps more oxygen away from the fire so it allows you to breathe better.
- Closing the bedroom door at night gives you more time to react to a smoke alarm.
- Closed doors keep dangerous smoke away from you – smoke and toxic gasses can incapacitate you and keep you from escaping the fire.
- Closing door cuts fire off from a fuel source and can better contain the fire.
And of course, where there is an opportunity, our internet of things has a solution.
In case you don’t automatically shut your doors (perhaps you’re a free spirit, a Gemini? Who knows?) There is a gadget for that. Lifedoor is a gadget that integrates with existing smoke detectors and does three things: it closes the door of the room, illuminates the room to help the occupant make a better decisions, and sounds a secondary alarm that can help wake your more heavier sleepers.
The product easily installs onto the hinge of a door and then attaches to the door with screws or even double sided tape. It activates when it hears the tone of the triggered smoke alarm (which is standardized at 85 decibels, #FunFacts).
For those of you who may fear the worst – this does not render the door unopenable and the battery should last 18-24 months depending on use.
One particular note about this new product is that its support has largely come from firefighters – and those guys know their stuff.
Hopefully, you won’t have to experience a housefire. But even if you don’t invest in LifeDoor – remember that closing your own door can keep you safe by giving you more time. And nothing is more important than being prepared: make sure you follow the best home fire practices you can – learn more from the American Red Cross.