How to Increase Your Smoke Detector’s Effectiveness

15 Mar

House fires are very common.  On a small scale, they can ruin a few items, but on a large scale, they can burn your entire home to the ground.  That is a devastating thought not only because you would be temporarily homeless and lose all of your things, but there is also the risk that someone could be harmed during the fire.  It is, therefore, very important to install proper fire detection devices in your home to minimize the risk of something like that happening.

Smoke detectors are one of the simplest and most common ways to detect fire inside a home.  To ensure that the alarms on your smoke detectors are working effectively, here are some useful tips to follow:

  • Regularly check and test your smoke detectors.  You hope that they will never have to go off, but you need to be sure they will function properly to alert you should a fire occur.
  • Buy smoke detectors that are by brand names or testing laboratories that you know produce quality products.
  • Choose smoke alarms that not only project auditory alarms, but also vibrations and light warnings. This is especially important for elderly people or individuals with hearing loss, who may have troubling hearing the alarm if it goes off.
  • If possible, install a smoke detector in every room of the house.  You have no way of anticipating where a fire might start, and a smoke detector will alert you of fires in any room, including those that you may not otherwise have noticed right away.
  • Avoid installing smoke alarms in areas where there is draft. These areas typically reduce the effectiveness of the equipment.
  • Make sure your smoke detectors work 24/7. Do not attempt to borrow the batteries of your smoke detector to use in something else, even if only for a short time.
  • Do not try to remove the batteries out of your detectors when you experience a false alarm. Often, smoke alarms can be triggered by steam from the shower or from smoke while you’re cooking. It may be annoying if there is a false alarm, but just fan the smoke detector until it goes off  or use the silencing feature – do NOT disable it.
  • Replace the batteries in your smoke detector whenever the alarm starts to chirp.  That means that the batteries are dying.  Also, replace any smoke detectors that are 10 years old or more with new ones.
  • Remember to dust your smoke detectors because they are prone to dust, cobwebs, and other debris.
  • Do not install detectors in areas in which they will be covered (i.e. in a cabinet).

 

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031

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