Home Smoke Alarms

Smoke alarms are extremely effective tools for preventing home fires and saving lives. According to the National Fire Protection Association, 65 percent of home fire deaths happen in homes with no smoke alarms at all or in homes with no functioning smoke alarms.

Follow these tips to make sure your smoke alarms are keeping you safe:

  • Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. Interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home.
  • Test alarms at least monthly by pushing the test button and replace batteries at least once a year or immediately if the alarm makes a chirping sound.
  • Smoke rises; install smoke alarms following manufacturer's instructions high on a wall or on a ceiling.

 

  • Replace all smoke alarms, including alarms that use 10-year lithium (or long-life) batteries and hard-wired alarms, when they are 10 years old or sooner.
  • Be sure the smoke alarm has the label of a recognized testing laboratory.
  • If cooking fumes or steam sets off nuisance alarms, replace the alarm with an alarm that has a "hush" button. A "hush" button will reduce the alarm’s sensitivity for a short period of time.
  • An ionization alarm with a hush button or a photoelectric alarm should be used if the alarm is within 20 feet of a cooking appliance.
  • Smoke alarms that include a recordable voice announcement in addition to the usual alarm sound, may be helpful in waking children through the use of a familiar voice.
  • Special smoke alarms are available for people who are deaf or hard of hearing
  • Smoke rises; install smoke alarms following manufacturer's instructions high on a wall or on a ceiling.
  • Special smoke alarms are available for people who are deaf, hard of hearing or who have other disabilities.

 

For more smoke alarm tips, visit www.nfpa.org/homesmokealarms.