When we moved into a home with fireplaces, I was thrilled and petrified. On one hand, fireplaces are beautifully functional and offer a backup when the heat goes out in emergencies. They also raise the risk of household fire, carbon monoxide poisoning and smoke damage. For many nights when we first moved in, I would lie awake in bed, picturing all the various escape routes in case of fire. Over and over again I would picture fires going astray.
Both a blessing and a curse , the fireplaces weren't quite ready to be used when we moved in. One was blocked with plywood and another had a completely broken flue. For most of the winter, we didn't even attempt a fire. Once the fireplaces were functional, I needed more security before lighting that first match. I went a bit overboard with smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors (both important with fireplaces) and today I am going to share my results with you. Here are the devices I tested, ranked in order from my favorite down.