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Smoke alarms – why, where, which ones and when?

Easton Electrical smoke alarms

Why have a smoke alarm?

There wouldn’t be a home or apartment in Victoria that doesn’t have at least one smoke alarm. It is now law that all new homes must have hardwired smoke alarms and it makes absolute sense.

Smoke alarms would be the single best thing you could have in your home to warn you of a fire!
All rental properties must have WORKING smoke alarms, however this is where it gets a bit tricky as to which ones would be best.

Where?

There is no point having a smoke alarm in your kitchen, it’s most likely to cause nuisance alarms and you’ll probably end up whacking it off the ceiling with a broomstick out of frustration!
The building regulations stipulate smoke alarms within 2 meters of all bedroom doors?
Why? Because you want to be warned of a fire when you’re asleep.
During the day if a fire breaks out in your kitchen or home you’re most likely to be awake or away – smoke alarms are designed to save lives, not property.
All bedrooms must be covered by this regulation, ideally the alarms would be linked so that when one goes off, they all go off.

Which ones?

Mains powered hard wired linked smoke alarms are the best option. They are more accurate in telling the difference between a fire and burnt toast and are louder.
They do have a battery back up for when the power fails and most batteries last 5 years before replacing. An intermittent “chirp” around every 30 seconds indicates it’s time to change the battery (usually at 4 in the morning!)

It’s not always possible to install mains powered smoke alarms in existing homes so here’s the next best option – a good quality battery smoke alarm. New battery smoke alarms are now available that have a built in 5 or 10 year lithium ion battery and some can even be linked to work with other battery smoke alarms of the same brand.

I wouldn’t recommend the basic 9V square battery smoke alarm in a rental property as some tenants can be inclined to take out the battery for other uses. A sealed lithium ion alarm is a better option and they also come in mini sizes.

It’s highly recommend by the manufacturers that ALL smoke alarms, battery and mains powered be replaced every 10 years.

Contact us for a free assessment and quote on 0413 156 407 or book an appointment on our website here!

Easton Electrical

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