Few homeowners realise the importance of regular maintenance of smoke alarms.
Exelgard has devised the following tips to assist people in maintaining their smoke alarms:
- Smoke alarms both battery powered and 240v hard wired types, have a shelf life of around ten years, after this time Exelgard recommends you replace the alarm.
- Batteries should be changed each year to ensure that the smoke alarm is working. A good way of making this a habit is to change the smoke alarm batteries when clocks are changed for daylight saving or some other memorable date such as 1st of April or New Years day.
- Always replace the battery in the smoke alarm, even if its a mains powered smoke alarm, as soon as the alarm warns that the batteries are low. Avoid the tendency to take the battery out and have a smoke alarm that is not active, this decision could be deadly.
- Homeowners should test their alarm once a month by operating the test button. In addition, vacuum or use a soft brush to clear the grill on the smoke alarms to ensure it is dust free.
- Smoke alarms should be fitted outside each sleeping area and in each bedroom if the occupants smoke in the bedroom, have heaters or electrical appliances in their bedroom or if their door is shut preventing them from hearing the alarm outside their door.
- Smoke alarms should be positioned as per the manufacturers instructions, at least one metre away from air conditioners and fluorescent light fixtures. Care should be taken to avoid “dead air” spaces such as A frame ceilings or in the corners of a room.
- Many people buy smoke alarms with the best of intentions and are not aware that they need to maintain the alarm to get the best from it, which ultimately puts lives and property at risk.
- Smoke and fire are killers that often strike while people are asleep. A well maintained smoke alarm is the surest way to protect your home and family.
- Replace smoke alarms every 10 years.
- Change batteries once a year.
- Replace batteries when alarm signals batteries are low.
- Test your alarm once a month.
- Fit an alarm in each bedroom of the house.
- Position smoke alarms as per the manufacturers’ instructions.
For more information visit the Fire Protection Association Australia website: