Hiring the Smoke Detector Installation Contractors Near Me Is the Key to Saving Lives
Among the most overlooked home safety devices today is the smoke detector. And this is very unfortunate because a smoke detector is actually one of the keys to saving lives. Basically, a smoke detector is a type of device used for detecting the presence of smoke.
There are two general types of smoke detectors. One comes with a smoke detector wiring that will issue a signal into a monitored fire alarm system while another is commonly known as a smoke alarm, and works by triggering a local audible or visual alarm coming from the detector itself.
The smoke detector device is usually housed inside a disk shaped plastic enclosure although the shape will also vary, depending on the manufacturer and the product model. Most of these devices work by means of optical detection or by physical process known as ionization.
Other devices make use of both methods in order to increase their sensitivity to smoke. The wiring of the smoke detector can be powered through a central fire alarm system that makes use of a battery backup or for a single family detached house, a smoke alarm is being powered only by a single piece of disposable battery.
Installation and Placement
Smoke detectors are usually being installed on places where they can do most good. In the United States, most of the local and state laws about the required number of smoke detectors, as well as their placement, which is usually based on the standards set by the National Fire Prevention Association. The laws that govern the installation of the devices will vary from one jurisdiction to another. The United States has required that the smoke detector is to be installed in every habitable level and on attics that are easily accessible and are within the vicinity of all bedrooms.
For a new home construction, there are certain minimum requirements to be met and these requirements are usually more stringent. For instance, all of the smoke detector wiring should be directly hooked into the wiring system and must come with a battery backup. Some of the jurisdictions will also require that the smoke detectors should be installed on main hallways, garages and stairways.
Wired units can help to allow a dozen and even more smoke detectors to be interconnected. Thus, if one of the devices detects the presence of smoke, the alarms will immediately sound on all of the detectors within the network, thereby increasing the chances that all of the people in the house will be alerted, even though they are right behind closed doors.
Smoke detector wiring that comes with interconnections can be installed by any of the smoke detector installation contractors near me.
Proper Alarm Placement is Crucial
Experts would suggest that alarm placement in your home is critical. According to them, these devices must be placed generally all over your house. The standards set by the National Fire Protection state that there should be an alarm on each every level of a house, outside of sleeping area and in each bedroom.
Although individually installed alarms will really work, interconnected alarms are often more likely to warn homeowners, especially if the fire happens in an unoccupied area. In interconnected systems, the alarm that is activated on one area will usually trigger the other alarms to sound.
Ensuring that your Smoke Detector is Properly Working
In the United States, 90 percent of homes are said to have one smoke alarm. This is according to a survey conducted by the National Fire Protection Association. However, the survey has also revealed that only 70 percent of these alarms are actually working.
Dead and missing batteries are usually the two major reasons for dysfunctional smoke alarms. For battery only units, the nuisance alarms used to warn low battery life would trigger homeowners to remove or disconnect the battery immediately.
Fire prevention experts have said that batteries for smoke detectors must be changed regularly. Even though an alarm operates through electricity and comes with a battery backup, it should still be inspected and checked on a regular basis. The rule of the thumb is to ensure that batteries are changed at least twice in a year. Newer homes usually have smoke alarms that are being powered by an electrical system.
Space Heaters and Fireplace are Potential Fire Hazards
It is worth noting that fireplace and space heaters are potential fire hazards. If your house is equipped with a wood-burning fireplace, then you need to make sure that the logs are placed three feet away from other items before you fire up any firewood in the fireplace. It is also recommended that you replace space heaters that are already more than ten years old.
Fire Safety Depends on the Type of Smoke Detector
With the various options available, shopping for smoke alarms these days is not always an easy task. If you do your research online, you will be presented with a plethora of smoke detectors with different models and features and choosing can be even more confusing.
According to experts, it is important that you have different types of smoke detectors installed all over your home, since these devices are capable of detecting different kinds of fires. It is also important that you link the smoke detectors although it does not necessarily mean that you hardwire them. To ensure the best protection, it is highly recommended that you go for the interconnected smoke alarms. As mentioned, if one of these alarms will sound, then everything else will follow.
Hard wired smoke alarms can be connected into the electrical system in your home and can be linked with the other alarms in your home. Although these devices offer the best protection, they are typically more expensive and will require the need to hire smoke detector installation contractors near me for the installation.
Most of the smoke detectors operate by means of batteries. If these batteries run down, the device will immediately become dysfunctional or inactive. If the battery is low, some of the smoke detectors will create a signal of a chirping sound happening at regular intervals. Experts have come up with public awareness campaigns that will suggest changing the batteries as often as they change the batteries of their clocks.
Some of the smoke detectors also come with a lithium battery that could operate for up to eight to ten years, although this will actually make it less likely for homeowners to change batteries, since replacement will be required infrequently. However, by that time, the entire smoke detector device might need to be replaced. Although it is relatively expensive, the user replaceable lithium batteries are highly recommended.
Homeowners who have concerns or questions about the replacement of their smoke detector devices, as well as installation and repair, must immediately get in touch with any of the smoke detector companies. Installation, repair and replacement of these devices should not be treated as a do-it-yourself job. In fact, fire marshals and building inspectors might be needed in order to provide advice on the safe and proper placement of the devices.