Tips for keeping your smoke alarms tip-top
As we just turned our clocks ahead last Sunday, now is a valuable time to check your smoke alarms and ensure they are installed and working properly.
Smoke alarms wear out just like other equipment in your home. Smoke alarms use sensors to identify smoke in the house, and the sensors can begin to fail after 10 years. Dust, cobwebs, debris and grease can impede the operation of the smoke alarm, costing valuable time in the alarm’s activation and diminishing your response time to extinguish a small fire, evacuate the house or call 911.
To determine the age of your smoke alarm, remove the alarm head from the wall or ceiling (but make sure you put it back in place before going to bed). Look for the manufacture date on the base. If your smoke alarm is less than 10 years old, check the battery. If it doesn’t work, replace the battery and reinstall the alarm.
Take this crucial time right now to test and check your smoke alarm, your family’s safety depends on it.
In today’s modern home you have less than 3 minutes to safely evacuate unless it is equipped throughout with a sprinkler system. If you do not have a smoke alarm in your home, please contact your local fire department.
Ralph Sartain is interim fire chief. He can be emailed at email@example.com.