Smoke alarms have been proven to save lives. However, they have to be properly installed and maintained. When was the last time you tested your smoke alarms? The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) recommends you test your detector monthly. Many homeowners do not abide by this recommendation. Instead they may only test their smoke detector once or twice a year. If you haven't tested your smoke alarm recently, consider conducting the following thorough check-up.
You may not realize it, but your smoke detector has an expiration date. The anticipated lifetime for a smoke detector is seven to ten years, depending on the model purchased. NFPA recommends replacing detectors every ten years. If your detector exceeds this age range, you should consider replacing it with a new one.
How many smoke detectors you should have depends on the size and layout of your house. NFPA recommends you install a smoke alarm in every bedroom. In addition, you should have one on each level of your home. You may not want to put one in your kitchen since any smoke created through cooking will set it off. Consider putting a smoke alarm in a room adjacent to the kitchen instead.
If you haven't purchased a smoke detector in a few years, you may be surprised by the options. Photoelectric smoke alarms are often preferred because they are not as likely to have false alarms due to cooking smoke or shower steam. This will prevent you from pulling the battery and forgetting to put it back in. You may want to purchase a smoke detector that also includes a carbon monoxide alarm. Wireless interconnect alarms offer another nice option. If a detector on the first floor senses smoke, all alarms will sound. This increases the chance of waking up someone who is sleeping upstairs before the fire is overwhelming.
After you have completed a thorough checkup of your smoke detectors, replaced any that are out of date and verified you have all locations in the house covered, take the time to review your escape plan with your family. Emphasize that everyone should get out and stay out.
Taking the time to evaluate your smoke detectors and review your escape plan could save lives. While your home insurance policy can replace lost items or help rebuild your house, it cannot replace lost lives. Keep your loved ones safe with working smoke detectors.
We’ll help keep your home safe. Call Avanti Associates at (914) 273-8511 for more information on Armonk home insurance.