Smoke Alarms

About Fire Detectors

Nationally, each year thousands of people die and many more are injured as a result of fires in the home and billions of dollars worth of property is destroyed. About 75% of residential fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke detectors. Most residential fires occur at night during the winter months. The chances of dying in a residential fire are cut in half when a working smoke detector is present.

Types of Smoke Detectors

Both types of detectors will provide more protection than no detector.

  • Ionization smoke detectors react to smaller smoke particles created by hot, blazing fires
  • Photoelectric smoke detectors react to larger smoke particles created by smoldering fires

Power Source

Smoke detectors are powered by batteries or house current. Battery operated smoke detectors are easier to install and will continue to operate in the event of a power failure. If your home has a smoke detector that is connected to the house current and does not have a battery backup, they will not operate during a power outage. It is recommended to install a battery operated smoke detector to complement detectors connected to house current.

Installation and Maintenance

  • Always read the manufacturer's instructions before installing a smoke detector. Smoke detectors should never be placed near air vents or doors where drafts could affect the smoke detector's operation
  • Always keep the detector in good working condition. Follow manufacturer's instructions. Replace batteries every year or sooner, if needed
  • Clean the detector face and grill opening often to remove the dust
  • Most importantly, test your smoke detector at least once a month