Replacing Smoke Detectors
Do yours Need to be Replaced?
Did you know?
Smoke detectors don’t just need batteries changed, they also need to be replaced. Did you also know that September is National Preparedness Month? Do you feel ready or prepared for anything? If not, we are here to help you get prepared.
Smoke detectors are a normal piece of equipment that are in every home or business and most times they’re easy to forget about until they start beeping. Ah, the harmonious sound of a smoke detector telling you it needs new batteries. The high pitch noise that serves as a consistent reminder until you finally get around to it. Yes, this is usually annoying, but it is also important to remember that these tools are there all the time and there to help, not just to annoy you when they feel like it.
If you were ever to have a fire, you probably want your smoke detectors to be working so that you have time to safely get out of the home. That is why you should have them in all of the recommended locations so that you have complete coverage and plenty of time to get out. You also should have CO2 detectors installed in a hallway outside of the bedrooms and at least one on each level of the home.
Smoke detectors are a critical part of keeping you and your family safe. They will sound an alarm at the first sign of smoke. While smoke doesn’t always mean fire, most fire victims die of inhalation of smoke and toxic gasses, which is why CO2 detectors are crucial as well. The majority fatal fires occur when families are asleep and do not have enough time to escape. There are an average of 480,000 house fires per year in the U.S. Around four thousand people die and two thousand are severely injured nationwide on average in a year due to house fires. So, preparing for a fire is more important to your safety than you may think. While you’re preparing this month to make sure you have the right measures in place for any disaster type, make sure your smoke detectors are good to go. These bodyguards work around the clock to ensure your safety.
In preparation, you may see that there are two different types of smoke detectors. Photoelectric and Ionization which is the more common of the two. In the ionization detector, there is a small amount of radioactive material between two charge plates and when the smoke gets in between the two plates it interrupts the charge and triggers the alarm. Over time, the radioactive material can dissipate and will no longer sense the smoke that causes the alarm to trigger, which is exactly why your smoke detectors need to be replaced. When was the last time you did that?
So I don’t just replace the batteries?
Sure the annoying beeping is a sign you need to replace the batteries in your smoke detectors, but for your safety you should be replacing both the batteries and the smoke detector more than you probably do. Even though your smoke detector will let you know if it needs new batteries, they should be changed at least once a year. Especially if you are new to a home or apartment, changing the batteries that are already in there is best to keep you prepared and safe. If you’re looking to avoid this hassle, then you might want to consider buying a lithium battery. These batteries will last 10 years and can be found in any regular box store.
As for your smoke detector itself, that should be changed once every eight to 10 years. This is important to make sure that your smoke detectors are up to date and working properly in case of an emergency. There is a date code stamped on the back of every detector from the manufacturer to let you know when they were made so you can easily keep track of when you need to change yours.
Turns out, I need a new smoke detector. What do I do?
Transformation Electric can come help you, no worries. Our experienced electricians work to keep you and your family safe. It’s a quick process that only takes five to 10 minutes to do. At Transformation Electric we install Kiddie smoke detectors in your home. Smoke detectors come in a huge range of types and prices. They range anywhere from 15 dollars to 250 dollars. You can even install ones that will connect to your wifi and send you notifications to your phone. If you’re comfortable replacing them on your own it is a task you can do, if not Transformation Electric can help you with this task.
As the seasons are changing, this is something that is really important to look at and make sure your smoke detectors are up to date. House fires increase during the fall and winter, peaking in December and January. The peak season is right around the corner so join us for National Preparedness Month by checking all detectors in your home. Pennsylvania has one of the highest fatality rates of accidental CO2 poisoning according to the CDC so we want to make sure you and your family are both prepared and safe.
So have you checked your smoke detectors yet?