There are 2 types of Smoke Alarm “Ionisation” and “Optical”
Ionisation Smoke Alarm
The cheapest and most common type. Very sensitive to small particles of smoke from “flaming” fires like chip pans. Will detect this type of fire before the smoke gets too thick.
Optical Smoke Alarm
More expensive type but more effective at detecting larger particles from “slow burning” fires such as smouldering foam or P.V.C. wiring.
How many smoke alarms do I need?
For maximum protection one smoke alarm per room except the bathroom, kitchen and garage. Heat alarms may be considered where fumes from cooking or smoke from cigarettes or open fires could lead to unwanted alarm activations.
For minimum protection one smoke alarm for each level/floor of your home.
Where do I fit them?
On the ceiling as close to the centre of the room as possible.
Keep in mind your ability to hear the smoke alarm at night with the door closed.
Know your Evacuation Plan!
The purpose of a Smoke Alarm is to give an early warning of an outbreak of fire! It is vital that you and your family know exactly what to do when the Smoke Alarm activates.
Testing and Maintenance
Smoke alarms require very little maintenance but to ensure it operates when needed:
- Once a week test the smoke alarm by pushing and holding the test button until it activates.
- Every 6 months vacuum and brush the casing to get rid of dust.
- Every year change the battery.
- Every 10 years replace the smoke alarm.