The smoke alarm is one of the most simple yet critical pieces of technology that anyone should have in their home. In fact, not only should you have it, but it is required by the Electrical Code in the State of Massachusetts that you have these installed in your home during a building or remodeling phase. When you attempt to purchase/sell your home, the Fire Department must sign off that the smoke alarms are functioning properly and that there are the proper number, per code, throughout the house.
The National Fire Protection Agency suggests that the average life expectancy of a residential smoke alarm is 7-10 years, and the average carbon monoxide detector is roughly the same, slightly less. There are combination units as well, which are a much more cost effective and reliable choice when it comes to these devices, versus the plug in type C02 detectors. We recommend that our customers check their smoke/C02 alarms on a monthly basis by simply pushing the test button to ensure that all units are working. Furthermore, we advise to have all these devices replaced at around 5-7 years to ensure optimal functioning.
The US Fire Administration estimates that electrical fires account for approximately 67,800 fires annually in the US, 485 deaths and $868 million dollars in property damages! Most of these fires are the result of improper wiring methods and the injuries and death are caused by a lack of functioning smoke alarms in the home. It can take seconds for a spark to become a flame and minutes until it is a full fledged house fire, so every second counts.
Signs they Need Replacement
- As I mentioned previously, a good time frame to have them changed out is around the 5 year mark. You may sometimes be able to get away with longer, but they should, at the very least, be looked at by a professional. If you are not sure on the age of them, have them inspected. If one or more of your alarms are chirping, that is a sure sign that one of the hardwired units are not working, or one needs replacement.
- If you would like to have combination units installed.
- If they do not function during a monthly test of the unit.
- If you are not sure, give us a call. We will be able to talk you through the testing process, answer any questions you have, or come out to inspect or replace if need be.
Check your smoke alarms today. Do not put it off until tomorrow.
Kenny Corrao, Owner
Corrao Electric Co., Inc.