Bill’s POV: Hard-Wired Smoke Alarms

Bill’s Quality Electric, LLC shares information about a Super Bowl Fire Safety Challenge planned by Kidde featuring Seattle’s Fire Chief, Gregory Dean and Denver’s Fire Chief, Eric Tade, with a focus on getting fire detectors installed in at-risk homes. One of the issues the NFPA shares is that the main reason smoke alarms don’t sound in a fire is due to missing or dead batteries.

In reply to this issue, Bill says: “For 35 years now, based on International building codes adopted by local building authorities, homes have been required to have hard-wired smoke detection systems; the batteries are for back up when the power goes out. The power doesn’t generally go out until the fire department is on the scene or when the fire is well under way; thus the hard-wired smoke detection system in the home is far better protection than just single station battery-powered-only smoke detectors. Also, for at least 25 years, all of your hard-wired smoke detection systems have been required to have battery back up for each detector. When smoke detectors start beeping and replacing the battery doesn’t solve the problem, it is time to replace all of the hard-wired smoke detectors in the system even if they’re only a few years old. Smoke detectors beeping intermittently are often a sign of at least one malfunctioning unit in the system. The average life of a smoke detector is seven to ten years; even in the instructions it is stated how often the detectors should be replaced. With some inexpensive brands, as often as every five years. Properly operating smoke detectors save lives.”

Special Thanks to FireEngineering.com and to Seattle’s Fire Chief, Gregory Dean and Denver’s Fire Chief, Eric Tade and to the NFPA for this news story, Seattle, Denver Fire Chiefs Agree to Super Bowl Safety Challenge.