30 Life-Saving Products That Will Keep You and Your Home Safe
Home should be your safe haven, a place where you can walk in the door, breathe a sigh of relief and relax after a long day. Unfortunately, from accidental injuries to home break-ins, there are a lot of risks in today's world, even at home.
In fact, more than 18,000 Americans die every year in accidents that happen in the home, and a burglary occurs every 23 seconds. Those are intimidating statistics, but these 30 life-saving products will keep you and your home safe, allowing you to rest easy.
A Smartphone-Compatible Security Camera
When it comes to home security cameras, the Arlo Pro 2 is reliable across the board. The video is crisp and clear, you can live stream from anywhere using your device and it has some serious night vision capabilities. More importantly, the camera has built-in motion sensors, so it starts working as soon as it detects movement.
The favorite feature, however, is the built-in mic and speaker. Notice someone in your living room who shouldn't be there? Ask them what they're doing in your house from the safety of your car or office — and let them know you're calling the cops. At more than $300, it's a bit pricey but totally worth it.
A DIY Home Security System
Video is great, but why stop there? The Ring Alarm 5-Piece Kit offers an entire security system you can adjust to fit your needs. The five-piece bundle retails for less than $150 and includes a base station, contact sensor, motion detector, keypad and range extender.
Still not enough security? You can add on Ring panic buttons, smoke detectors, freeze/flood sensors, doorbells and more. In addition, you can choose to monitor the system yourself — it works with Alexa! — or you can pay an outside company for 24/7 professional monitoring. It's a one-of-a-kind security experience!
A Bracelet That Doubles As an Emergency Alert System
Fashionable and functional? Yes, please! This adorable invisaWear Smart Jewelry Silver Expandable Bracelet is not only a decent fashion accessory for every outfit, but it will keep you safe. Although this device looks like a fashionable bracelet, it's actually an emergency alert button. For about $130, it's a steal!
When you double-tap the back of the charm, it sends a message with your GPS coordinates to up to five people (pre-set), plus 9-1-1. The bracelet links to an app you install on your smartphone or tablet and is easy to set up. The downside: Once the battery dies, you have to buy a whole new charm for about $65.
A Portable Heater to Keep You Warm in Winter Emergencies
If your power gets knocked out during a summer storm, it might get hot and uncomfortable before you get your AC back, but what about losing power in winter? No heat in the winter can be downright dangerous, which is why an item like the Mr. Heater Portable Propane Radiant Heater is a household essential.
This handy heater works in the harshest conditions — even if you don't have electricity. Rated for indoor use, it's perfect for your bedroom and your living room and can even be safely used in a tent or camper. For less than $70, it's worth keeping around for emergencies.
A Fire Extinguisher
This one seems almost too obvious to include, but every home should have at least one fire extinguisher, such as the Kidde FA110 Multi-Purpose Fire Extinguisher, and most should have two or three. The number of extinguishers you need depends on the size of your home and whether you live in a multi-level or not.
Just imagine you're upstairs in the bathroom, and your hair dryer catches on fire. What will you do if your only fire extinguisher is downstairs under the kitchen sink? At roughly $20 each, it pays to buy more than one and keep them in several locations throughout your home.
A Device That Makes It Look Like People Are Home
Obviously, most burglars don't want to encounter a real, live person and have their plans foiled — or the police show up — which is why they usually target empty homes. The handy little FakeTV Extra Bright Burglar Deterrent can make burglars think you're home, even when you're not. It’s that simple.
Available for around $40, it mimics the light of a 40-inch LCD television set. With a built-in sensor and timer, you can easily simulate the changes, fades, flicks and swells of a real television show, even when you're miles away.
An Emergency Light Source
A simple pack of Bic Classic Disposable Lighters is an incredibly handy thing to have in case of emergency. After all, it seems like natural disasters are becoming more and more prevalent throughout the country. On the West Coast, wildfires and landslides are happening more frequently with more devastating effects. On the East Coast, tornadoes and hurricanes keep pummeling well-populated cities.
If the power goes out in your home at night, all the candles in the world won’t light up your world if you can’t light them. Although it’s a very basic product, a lighter can help you start a fire, light candles, light a gas stove and even help you navigate the dark to find flashlights and other items in a pinch. Plus, at less than $10 for a five-pack, they're a good deal!
A Smart Lock That's Perfect for Busy Families
The August Smart Lock Pro not only makes it easier to get into your home — no keys! — but it also lets you monitor who's coming and going throughout the day. If you have visitors coming, you can grant them temporary digital keys as well.
At around $200, it's a bit pricey, but the convenience is worth it for many people. Countless families today have one or more parents that work and kids who let themselves in after school. Others have cleaning people that arrive during the day or dog walkers that stop by to care for Fido. With all these people coming and going, it's nice to have a way to keep track of it all without handing out dozens of easy-to-lose keys..
A Video Doorbell That Lets You See Who's Outside
Ring scored a second spot on this list with the popular Ring Video Doorbell 2. This handy gadget allows you to see who's outside before you answer the door, eliminating all those awkward exchanges with sales people you don't want to meet. You can also speak through the device if someone you don't recognize is at the door.
While there are lots of smart doorbells on the market, Ring is at the top of the field. With motion-detection alerts, two-way talk and HD video with night vision, it's totally worth the $200 or so you'll spend on it.
A Lock That Can Withstand 800 Pounds of Force
Worried that your current locks just aren't strong enough? The Everplus Home Security Door Lock is easy to install — and can withstand up to 800 pounds of force! It's the perfect option for people who can't install a deadbolt but still want that extra security.
At less than $25 for two locks, this product is inexpensive and keeps everyone unwanted securely locked out. Simply use a power screwdriver to mount the lock to your door frame, and you'll be done in less than 5 minutes. Bonus: With a child-resistant opening mechanism, they are also a great solution for keeping young children from opening doors and wandering off unattended.
A Video Monitor to Keep an Eye on Your Little Ones
Many parents worry about their children, whether they're home alone, with a sitter or simply playing in another room. If you want to keep an eye on your little ones at all times, a high-quality baby monitor like the Panasonic Video Baby Monitor is a must.
At less than $150, this monitor covers all the bases at a relatively low price. With an extra-long range of up to 1,500 feet, it lets you pan, tilt and zoom to see everything going on in the room. Don't have kids? This monitor is just as useful for watching pets.
A Driveway Alarm to Alert You When People Are on Your Property
If you're like most people, you hate the thought of unannounced company. While you can't exactly stop your mom from showing up randomly or keep delivery guys from ringing your bell, at least you can be alerted when they're on the way with the Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm.
This alarm system lets you know whenever anyone gets within 500 feet, and you can add extra sensors throughout the yard, garage or inside your home for even broader coverage. You can also set custom chimes for different sensors. This product is a great value for less than $100!
A Safe to Hold All Your Valuables
When burglars break into your house, they usually look for small, valuable items they can grab quickly and sell for a lot of money, like jewelry and cash. They won't usually bother with a safe, making the Stalwart Electronic Steel Safe with Keypad a great way to keep your valuables and important documents secure for about $35.
It's small enough to be tucked into a closet, mounted to the wall or bolted to the floor. You can program it with both master and guest codes, and if the wrong code is entered too many times, it will sound an alarm.
A Basic First Aid Kit
Accidents happen around the house all the time, from minor cuts and scrapes to burns and muscle strains. When you have an injury that needs treatment, but doesn't necessarily require a doctor, a well-equipped first aid kit like the Total Resources International (TRI) First Aid Kit can be a life saver.
The 326-piece set goes way beyond the basics but still costs less than $35. With everything from alcohol pads to finger splints to a first-aid guide, it will keep you and your family "doctored" for years to come. As an added bonus, the shelves extend and tilt for easy refilling.
A Quality Gun Safe to Keep Your Family Out of Harm's Way
If you own a weapon, you need to own a gun safe — even if you don't have kids. A quality safe like the RPNB Portable Gun Safe will help prevent burglary, keep your gun safe from fire and help protect you from lawsuits. More importantly, in many states, it's the law to store guns in lockable cases.
This model provides secure storage for handguns, ammunition, passports, cash and other valuables, whether you're at home or on the road. A resettable three-digit combination makes it easy to open without a key, and a heavy-duty security cable makes it pry-resistant. Bonus: It meets TSA airline firearm guidelines, making travel simple.
An Emergency Kit for Natural Disasters
After an emergency or natural disaster, you may have to survive for several days on your own with no access to power or electricity — experts recommend having enough supplies to last at least 48 to 72 hours. You could create a kit of your own, or you could buy a premade version like the Ready America Emergency Kit.
For around $125, this single kit has supplies to keep up to four people safe and secure for three days. Each backpack includes first aid supplies, an emergency power station, food rations and more. With a five-year shelf life, the pack can be stored at home or at the office without worrying about replacement for quite some time.
A Sliding Door Security Bar to Prevent Entry Through Your Patio
If you have a patio or sunroom with sliding glass doors, you know you're in a pretty relaxing elite club. It's so lovely to be able to slip outside during nice weather and relax with a book or a glass of cold iced tea, but you need an Ideal Security Patio Door Security Bar if you don’t want your oasis to become a huge security risk.
Most burglars can easily pick the mediocre locks on patio doors with little to no trouble. If you're worried about those doors being a safety hazard, invest in this bar for less than $25 to help keep you and your family safe.
A Pill Dispenser for Older Family Members
Older adults face a lot of unique challenges, some of which can affect their health and safety. One challenge may be difficulty remembering things, which makes an Automatic Pill Dispenser an essential item if they take multiple daily medications.
At around $80, this gadget will automatically dispense pills up to six times a day so your loved one doesn't have to remember. In addition, a red light flashes and an alarm rings each time medication needs to be taken.
An Emergency Radio to Keep You in Touch
In the event of an emergency, it's vital to be able to receive updates and alerts from authorities. The RunningSnail AM/FM NOAA Digital Crank Radio receives AM/FM NOAA weather channels and automatically broadcasts weather alerts during natural disasters.
If you've lost power, this radio takes the place of radio and television news you can’t access. An emergency radio that can be powered via hand crank can help you stay in touch, even in the most dire of circumstances. The built-in flashlight can help you find your way when the power is out, and you can also use it to charge your cell phone. Not bad for around $25.
Motion Activated Lights for Your Yard or Driveway
If you’re concerned about people or animals coming into your yard at night, you may want to purchase a motion-activated light to install on your house or garage. Many veteran police officers will tell you that motion-activated lighting, such as LITOM Original Solar Lights, are a big deterrent against burglary. Plus, they help you feel safe when you come home late at night.
These lights are a highly popular option, with more than 10,000 reviews and 4.5 stars on Amazon. They run on solar power, so you don't need to worry about batteries or hard wiring, and they light up to 200 square feet with bright LED bulbs. At less than $20, these lights feel like a no-brainer.
A Carbon Monoxide Detector
Do all homes need a carbon monoxide detector, even if you don't use indoor generators or portable heaters? No matter what, the answer is always a resounding "yes," and the First Alert Smoke Detector and Carbon Monoxide Detector Alarm is a great option. A carbon monoxide detector is particularly important, even if there are no fuel-burning appliances in the house.
For less than $25, this battery powered model provides continuous monitoring, even if there's a power outage. If it does sense a problem, both a red flashing light and an alarm will alert you there’s an issue.
Outdoor Security Cameras to Protect Your Yard
These days, it's not uncommon for someone to walk right up to your house and steal a package off your porch. If someone shifty is lurking around, you're going to want to see them before something bad happens, and the Nest Cam Outdoor Camera can help you do it. Outdoor security cameras allow you to see what's happening right from your phone, no matter where you are.
Coming in at around $180, the system isn’t cheap, but it's worth the cost. It's user-friendly and easy to set up, and the video quality is higher than many competitors. Plus, you can purchase the Nest Aware plan to go with it and receive instant notifications about who (or what) is in your yard.
A Smoke Alarm That Sends Alerts to Your Phone
Can you imagine if you were away from home and the house caught on fire? The Nest Protect 2nd Gen Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm sends a notification to your phone the second there's smoke. When a fire is big enough to see from outside the house, it's often too late to save anything. That means your belongings would be toast by time your neighbors noticed the smoke and flames.
The Nest alarm tests itself once a month, so you always know when the batteries need to be replaced. Expect to spend around $120 for this equipment — and peace of mind.
An Alarm That Sounds When Someone Opens Your Window
Maybe you want to be alerted if a burglar tries to open your downstairs window, or maybe you're just worried about your teenager trying to sneak out at night. Either way, this Noopel Door and Window Alarm two-pack will do the trick.
Each unit comes with an alarm and a magnetic strip that you mount side-by-side on the window and its frame. As soon as the two pieces are separated, a loud alarm goes off and alerts you. At less than $15 for a pack of two, you can easily install them on every window in the house.
Smart Light Bulbs That Make It Look Like You're Home
Some days, you just can't make it home on time, but the Philips LED Smart Bulb Starter Kit makes sure you never walk into a pitch black house. If you get stuck at the office or the kids run late at practice, these smart lights brighten up the interior without you even being there.
You can set an automatic schedule for your smart lights so it always looks like someone is home, which typically sends burglars looking for a different home to rob. At just around $150, these lights are a solid investment.
Privacy Film for Your Windows
Is there anything creepier than the thought of taking a shower with someone peeping through the bathroom window? For less than $10, a simple window film, such as Coavas Window Film, can keep your private moments private.
No more worries about getting dressed in your ground floor apartment, where anyone walking by could try to peep through cracks in your blinds. The film lets in natural light while keeping prying eyes at bay. Bonus: It's perfect for both renters and homeowners. It sticks to your windows with static cling, leaving no messy adhesive behind.
An Easy-to-Use Escape Ladder
A house fire can be a super-scary experience, especially when you're trapped on the second floor without a way out. A foldable escape ladder like the 14-foot First Alert Two-Story Fire Escape Ladder is perfect for escaping from your second-story bedrooms and other living spaces.
The ladder is compact and easy to store and provides a way out in the event of an emergency. It's strong steel construction can easily hold more than 1,000 pounds, and you can quickly have it out the window and ready to go in minutes. At less than $40, this is a product you can't afford to miss if your house has multiple floors.
Pepper Spray to Keep You Safe When You're Out Alone
Many people, especially women, worry about going out alone without protection. This SABRE Advanced Compact Pepper Spray with Clip retails for less than $10 and can give you valuable peace of mind when venturing into shopping center parking lots at night or running along deserted trails in the early morning.
It's best to take precautions — just in case. This canister has a 10-foot range and includes marking die, so you'll know whether or not you hit your target. Just make sure you verify local laws before purchasing. Pepper spray is illegal in some states.
An Emergency Power Source
When the electricity goes out, you lose more than just the lights — refrigerators, radios, heating and air conditioning are all affected, which is why you need the Goal Zero Yeti 150 Portable Power Station. If the outage lasts more than a few days, you could be in some serious trouble without it.
If you don't want to buy a whole house generator, a small one like this can help alleviate some of your problems. The 168Wh portable power station can power up to five devices at once and recharges via AC or solar power. It will cost you around $200, but it's a sound investment.
A Security Sign If You Can't Afford an Alarm System
If you don't want — or can't afford — a full-blown security system, a Video Surveillance Sign or sticker might be the next best thing. Worried that it won't be effective? Most would-be thieves don't want to worry about security. When they see your sign, they are likely to leave without checking to see if you actually have an alarm.
If you know someone who works for ADT and can snag a sticker, great. If not, these video surveillance signs on Amazon should do the trick. For around $10 each, you can easily afford to place several around your property or in your windows.