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Fire Safety Week Roundup: Installing Smoke Alarms

As part of our celebration of Fire Safety Week (October 4-10), we would like to join the discussion and look at the most crucial aspect of saving lives in a fire...detection. Did you know the first fire alarm was invented in 1890? Or that smoke detectors were not required to be in homes until 1973? Laws have evolved over time as fire protection became more affordable, but the effect is indisputable. Since 1980, the number of deaths from residence fires has diminished by roughly fifty-percent.

Here are some helpful tips for installing and maintaining smoke detectors in your home.

- Install them on the ceiling or high portion of a wall. Heat rises and for a detector to be most effective, it needs to be elevated. Wall mounted detectors should more than six inches but less than 12 inches from the ceiling.

- Install them in every bedroom and on every level of the home. For the basement, mount the detector near the stairway to the next level.

- Install a detector in every open stairway.

- Install at least 10 feet away from any cooking appliance to avoid false alerts during food preparation.

- Install away from windows, ducts, or doors to avoid interference and insure optimum performance.

- Never paint, decorate, or place any cover over any alarm. Vacuum or blow out any dust from the alarms once a month.

- Press the test button once a month to make sure the alarm is working properly.

- Change batteries twice a year for peak performance. Many suggest changing batteries with each time change of Daylight Savings Time as a helpful reminder.

- Replace any alarm that is older than 10 years. Many new alarms come with Lithium Ion Batteries with a 10 year lifespan themselves. New alarms are likely to be carbon monoxide detectors, providing an added security.

- For the highest level of fire safety, interconnect all smoke alarms so that if one sounds all alarms are triggered.

Following these simple tips will provide you and your family with the highest level of fire safety protection.

Fire and Life Safety America also has a number of affordable fire protection solutions for commercial, residential, and industrial buildings. Products include sprinkler systems, fire detection and alarms, and special hazard systems to protect equipment that is crucial to business operations. Services include inspection and repair of fire safety systems including winterization.

For more fire safety tips and to learn more about affordable fire protection and fire life safety systems, check out our blog.

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