Smoke detectors and alarms are one of the precious fire safety devices that your home should have. It can double the survival of your family in case of a residential fire. Nonetheless, many homeowners are taking them for granted. Since they are a common presence in a household, it is easy to expect that they work at all times. However, like other devices and appliances, smoke alarms or detectors also require regular maintenance to function more effectively.
Below are some tips in maintaining your smoke alarm systems to ensure the best smoke detection possible.
Make it a point to test all your smoke alarm systems every month to make sure that the alarm sounder and the battery are functioning well. Clean smoke alarms every six months using a vacuum cleaner to remove dust and particles that could hinder the unitís performance. If you are using a 9V lead battery, make sure to replace them every two years.
Airborne dusts and contaminants can interfere with the ability of the smoke alarm to detect smoke, so make sure to clean them. Dust off cobwebs that settled around the units.
Keep an annual date to replace the battery in all the smoke alarm systems in your house. Consider choosing a date that is easy to remember or has significance on you to ascertain that you will not forget.
Test the smoke alarms monthly by simply pressing the test buttons. If it sounds when you test it, then it probably is working well. You can further test your smoke detectors by lighting a candle, blowing it out and holding it a few inches below the smoke detector immediately and allowing a trail of smoke to drift inside to trigger an alarm.
If an alarm system goes off often even in the absence of smoke in the air do not disable it. Instead, find out the case of the false alarms. Most frequently, you will discover that the smoke alarm is located near the kitchen or the bathroom where steam and fumes from cooking could set off the alarm even without danger. You can relocate the smoke alarm further away from the bathroom or the kitchen. However, if the false alarms recur, then it might be time to replace it.
Bear in mind that even with regular cleaning and battery changes, your smoke alarm systems do not last forever. Outdated smoke detectors could randomly fail, so it is important to be on the safe side at all times by replacing your household smoke alarms every ten years. If you have lived for less than ten years in your home but is not certain about how old the existing smoke alarms around the home are, never take chances with the safety of the entire family. Replace these old units with new ones right away. Remember, your home is not just a place that provide luxury and comfort to your family but also a place of safety, particularly if you have older people and little children around.
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