Reasons to Install a Smoke Alarm in Your Home

Maintaining a safe home is one of the most important aspects of our everyday lives. It can’t be accomplished by a single person but requires participation from everyone, and various aspects need to be looked into to ensure your living space is a safe place for every member of your family. That being said, safety is the reason to choose your home’s electrical cables wisely and safety features like smoke alarms should be on top of your list to ensure the health and safety of your family.

smoke alarms
Source: .aireserv.com

Smoke alarms and smoke detectors are terms that are often used interchangeably, however, there is a difference between the two. Smoke alarms detect smoke and sound an alarm and are widely used in residential settings. Smoke detectors, on the other hand, sense smoke, but they must be connected to a fire alarm system control panel. They are detection devices only, not alarms.

Different Types of Smoke Alarms and How to Choose

Smoke alarms are installed in houses and apartments all around the country. A smoke alarm is critical for the early detection of a fire in your home. It can allow you and your family the precious time needed to save your lives. You can choose a smoke alarm for any room of your home and take the first key step towards your family’s safety. 
There are two main types of smoke alarms for home use – ionisation and photoelectric. Both ionisation and photoelectric smoke alarms are better at detecting different, but potentially fatal fires. Photoelectric smoke alarms are faster at detecting smoke from smouldering synthetic material than ionisation alarms. This is very important because detecting the fire early in the smouldering phase can help you put it out or escape.

smoke_detector_x4
Source: vthrfun.com

Mains Powered or Battery-Operated

Smoke alarms connected to 240V mains power are used in residential homes and must be installed by a qualified electrical contractor. If they are outside your budget, you can opt for lithium-powered smoke alarms. They come with a pre-installed non-removable battery, which can last up to ten years, or for the life of the smoke alarm. That’s a great advantage because you will not have to remember to change the battery each year. Even mains powered alarms have backup batteries, so you can check if there is a non-removable or rechargeable one.

Test Button

The test button allows you to check if your home fire alarm is working. Some models can be tested by using a remote control or by shining a torch on the alarm, which is very convenient for high ceilings or if you are not very mobile. There will be no need to climb a ladder or reach up the alarm with a broom handle to press the button.

test-me-alarm
Source: freeimages.com

Hush Button

This is the button that helps you silence the alarm and can be very useful when you’ve burnt your food, for instance, and set off the alarm. 

Interconnection

Mains powered, as well as some battery-powered alarms, can be connected to each other. This means that if one smoke sensor goes off, the rest will go off, too, and all occupants will be alerted to a fire at the same time.

Reasons to Install Smoke Alarms in Your Home

Smoke alarms are your first line of defence against fires. Properly installed and maintained smoke alarms are one of the best and most affordable ways of providing an early warning of a potentially deadly fire. They should be installed on every level of your home to ensure maximum safety at all times. Here are a few important reasons why you should ensure all the smoke alarms in your home are installed and in good working order. 

Smoke-Detector
Source: nuclearsafety.gc.ca

Peace of Mind

The purpose of smoke alarms is to warn you of a potential danger and having them installed throughout key points of your living space can make you and your family feel safe. Knowing that you have a reliable and early detection system in place and working well can help you sleep better at night and give you peace of mind whenever you are outside of your home.

Increase the Value of Your Property

Maybe you’ve never thought about it, but smoke alarms can help you increase your property’s value on the market if you ever decide to sell. Prospective buyers may look upon this type of home improvement as an important addition to the property they are considering purchasing.

smoke alarm setup
Source: nfpa.org

Real-Time Monitoring of Fire Accidents

Some smoke alarms offer real-time monitoring, so professional monitoring services will send help when your fire alarm detects a potential danger in your home. They will contact and dispatch the local authorities to respond to the alarm.
Your responsibility as a homeowner is to ensure you have an adequate home fire alarm. Investing in this safety measure will pay back in dividends in the event of experiencing a house fire. Also, it’s always a good idea to create a fire plan. It gives clear instructions to every person in your home on what to do in case of a fire emergency and includes a designated area where you should all meet. You can take time to practice the fire emergency plan to ensure that everyone understands what to do and where to go. Practice drills are great as they can prevent panic or confusion in the event of a real fire.