water damage

Unless your home is surrounded by a force field, buried underground, and guarded by a dragon with very special abilities, it’s not disaster-proof. But there are gadgets that can help you and your possessions survive once calamity comes. From flood protection to carbon monoxide, here’s what you need.

Flood Protection

A home is can be threatened by two main sources of water, internal and external. While rain and swollen rivers are more predictable flood culprits, faulty plumbing is sneakier. Use flood detectors in common places around your home to alert you to a wet invader.

  • Fibaro Flood Sensor ($70)
    One of the top gadgets on the market is the gracefully-designed Fibaro Flood Sensor. It can connect to external alarms and it can connect to cameras. It also features a temperature gauge, because frozen pipes are a leading cause of plumbing-related water damage. The gadget may be able to possibly prevent a plumbing flood, and it can let you know if it is happening well before major damage occurs.
  • SmartThings Water Leak Sensor ($40)
    Competing with the Fibaro is the SmartThings Water Leak Sensor. Many of the same features as the Fibaro, but when temperatures drop, it can be programmed to turn on nearby portable heaters. The sensor doesn’t work well by itself—you need to purchase a SmartThings Hub along with it.

The Verdict

The Fibaro, although more expensive, has superior design and functionality compared to the SmartThings sensor. Whichever you choose, don’t forget to make sure that your trusty sump pump is in good working condition!

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning & Fire Protection

Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors have saved plenty of lives, but they were only the first of their kind

  • The Nest Protect
    The Nest Protect is the future of combating carbon monoxide poisoning and fire damage. It detects heat and smoke, as well as the gas. It can also be placed in multiple locations for maximum effectiveness, and if that wasn’t good enough for you, it also tests its own alarm daily.
  • Nest Protect + Nest Learning Thermostat
    If paired with a Nest Learning Thermostat, the Nest Protect gains the ability to shut off HVAC in the event of a fire, helping contain the fire and its smoke.
  • Nest Protect + Nest Light Bulbs
    Integration with HVAC is cool, but integration with something as simple as lightbulbs is next level. If you have Nest smart light bulbs installed, the Nest Protect will cause the lights in your home to flash as a warning if fire or dangerous carbon monoxide levels are detected.


As technology advances, we as homeowners become empowered to better care for our homes and families in the event of disaster. Be prepared—arm your home against floods, fire, and carbon monoxide.

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