Smoke Detectors

Smoke Detector and SmokeSmoke Detector Safety

     A working smoke detector should be placed on every level of your home.  That includes basements and attics where applicable.  Detectors should be placed on the ceiling.  Try to avoid installation near kitchens and bathrooms.   Steam or smoke can cause your detector to frequently false-alarm.   It is a good idea to place detectors at the tops of stairs because as smoke rises it’ll come in contact with an alarm faster than one placed farther from a stairwell opening.    

     It cannot be overemphasized to have a smoke detector near your sleeping area, for example in the common hallway outside the bedrooms.   At night, especially if you sleep with your bedroom door closed, you may not sense danger until after a fire has grown.   

     It is recommended that the battery be changed twice each year.  Smoke detectors should be tested monthly to assure the battery has not expired prematurely or the detector itself hasn’t failed.  Often the tip of a broom handle can be pushed against the “test” button until the detector alarms.  Most detectors have a separate “chirp” alarm to alert you when battery power to the unit is low.  If you routinely test your detector it becomes easier to tell the difference between the sounds.  

     What kind of detector should you buy?  Any detector, as long as it has an Underwriters Laboratory (UL) label.  You can purchase them at most retail or hardware stores.  And it is recommended that a detector be replaced ten years after its purchase date.  Most new detectors are labeled with an “expiration date.”  But you can write the purchase date on detectors without such marks.

     If you live in Wickliffe and are elderly, infirm, or otherwise unable to change your smoke detector batteries or if you have no smoke detectors in your home, we can help. Call the Fire Department at 943-7133 M-F during business hours