Maintain your smoke detectors; they save lives
It is important that you test your smoke alarms montlhy ; to ensure they are working properly and, for example, that the battery is not empty.
All smoke detectors (all brands) should be cleaned every 6 months to ensure they will still alarm if smoke or fire starts in your home.
Smoke alarms should be replaced after 10 years of use, despite the battery life. After 10 years, the smoke alarm becomes contaminated by dust (even if you clean it regularly), which can cause false alarms and/or malfunctions. Not sure how old your smoke alarms are? Don't wait until it's too late and replace them all. Prevention is better than cure.
Every month: Testing
It is important to test your smoke alarms every month by pressing the test button to make sure they are working properly. Testing once a month also keeps the battery working properly.
Every 6 months: Cleaning
Clean your smoke/CO alarms every six months with a hoover to make sure the sensors are not clogged with dust and small particles. If your alarms are dusty, they could malfunction. Be smart, stay safe and take a few minutes to clean your smoke alarms.
Every 10 years: Replace
Most people know that the batteries need to be replaced regularly, but did you know that you should also replace the entire smoke alarm? After 10 years, smoke alarms have reached the limit of their lifespan and must be replaced.
How do you test a smoke detector?
Follow the instructions in your smoke alarms' manual if you want to know exactly how to test it.
There are two types of smoke alarms available: battery operated and wired. Most people know to test the first type, but this is also true of wired smoke detectors. Most wired smoke alarms have a battery backup that will operate if, for example, the power fails. This battery should also be tested and replaced if necessary to ensure that the unit works properly.
How to test most smoke detectors:
- Make sure everyone in the house knows about the test.
- Children may be frightened by the noise; make sure they stay at an appropriate distance.
- Send someone to the room furthest away from the smoke alarm to check if the alarm is heard there as well. If not, add another smoke alarm.
- Test the alarm according to the user's manual. Most smoke alarms have a test button that must be pressed for a few seconds. If the alarm sounds weak or muted, the batteries need replacing. Test doesn't work? Contact the manufacturer.
- After replacing the batteries, you must carry out another test to check that they have been inserted correctly.
How do you clean a smoke alarm?
Over time, dust, animal hairs, cooking fumes and pollen (which build up in the smoke chambers of your smoke alarms) can reduce the sensitivity or cause false alarms more often. To keep your smoke alarms from sounding an alarm on time, it is necessary to clean them every 6 months. Read the user's manual carefully; in most cases you can clean them according to the instructions below.
How to clean your smoke alarms:
- Remove the smoke detector from the ceiling.
- Use a hoover to clean the air holes on the back of the smoke alarm. The openings on the front are for sound and do not need to be cleaned.
- After cleaning, carry out a test to ensure that the smoke alarm is working properly again.
Why should smoke detectors be replaced?
Let us send you a Smartreminder
We understand that your smoke alarms are not top of mind, and that if you have a busy life you easily forget to test, clean or replace them. That's why we have a Smartreminder service. Sign up and receive an e-mail when it's time to test, clean or replace your smoke alarms.Receive a reminder