Where to Install Smoke Detectors
You probably don’t pay much attention to your smoke alarms on a daily basis, but they’re your hardworking, first line of defense. Studies of fire safety have shown that the best protection against fatal, property-damaging fires is installing smoke alarms that work properly.
Types of Alarms
There are two types of fire alarm used in residential settings.
- Ionization alarms sense actual flames once a fire starts.
- Photoelectric alarms can sense the presence of a smoldering fire before it bursts into flame.
- Fire safety experts recommend installing a mix of both types for total protection.
Where to Install Smoke Alarms
Placement of your smoke alarms is important. You should have several in your house placed in strategic locations. According to the National Fire Protection Association, you should put them in the following spots.
- In each bedroom.
- Outside every sleeping area, for instance, the hallway between bedrooms.
- On each level of the home, from the basement to attic.
- In the living room, dining room and stairways.
- Away from windows or air vents.
Installing interconnected alarms is a great idea. With interconnected alarms, all the alarms in the house will alert you if one of them senses fire or smoke. You can connect them wirelessly or through the electrical system.
In order to work together, all your alarms must be from the same manufacturer and, in some cases, the same model. Ask your electrician about the best way to connect your alarms and detectors.
Maintaining Your Fire Alarms
Keep your alarms and detectors working and ready to go with regular maintenance. These steps take only a few minutes.
- Replace the battery once a year.
- In smoke alarms with 10-year batteries, if the battery starts chirping before the 10 years are up, the alarm is defective and should be replaced.
- Test each alarm once a month using the “test” button.
- Only use the battery type and brand recommended by the alarm’s manufacturer.
- Never paint a smoke alarm or put stickers on it.
Installing Smart Alarms
Modern smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors can link to your home’s smart automation system. Wireless systems can also be used to interconnect all your alarm systems.
This makes it easy to monitor and control these alarms. Many of them give you added security features, for instance:
- A loud, auditory warning that alerts you when you’re not at home.
- Continual self-testing of the detector’s battery and signals.
- Ability to be controlled through any wireless device.
There’s no question that smart automation makes your life easier. When it comes to detectors, though, you might want to bear the following cautions in mind.
- Many local building codes require hard-wired detectors in new construction because wireless is not considered stable enough.
- Even with hard-wired detectors, use a battery backup for extra peace of mind.
- Most wireless alarms only have photoelectric sensors, so you will still need alarms that have ionization sensors.
Get Safety with SESCOS
If you’re planning to install new smoke alarms or carbon monoxide detectors, you’re taking the right steps to protect your home and your family. Let a SESCOS expert help you select the right type of alarm, the right placement and the best way to wire everything. Learn more about our current safety sensor specials today!