If it's been more than a year (or really a month) it's been too long!
"A properly installed and maintained smoke alarm is the only thing in your home that can alert you and your family to a fire 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Whether you’re awake or asleep, a working smoke alarm is constantly on alert, scanning the air for fire and smoke.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, almost two-thirds of home fire deaths resulted from fires in properties without working smoke alarms. A working smoke alarm significantly increases your chances of surviving a deadly home fire."
The NFPA and most smoke alarm manufacturers also recommend replacing your smoke alarms every 8-10 years on top of the normal maintenance required such as changing the battery at least annually and vacuuming and testing monthly.
It is also recommended to have both types of smoke alarms in your home or a combination alarm. The two types are:
- Ionization: smoke detection is generally more responsive to flaming fires.
- Photoelectric: smoke detection is generally more responsive to fires that begin with a long period of smoldering
Dateline NBC tested the two types of alarms and found differences of more than 20 minutes between the two types of alarms depending on the type of fire. An extra 20 minutes in a fire can make a huge difference between everyone getting out safely and tragedy.
Lastly, verify you have smoke alarms in the proper places throughout your home. There should be at least one on each level including the basement, and both inside and outside of sleeping areas. If you only have one in the hallway outside your bedroom and a fire starts behind a closed door it could be a long time before enough smoke seeps out to trigger the alarm.
For more tips on making your home safer or to schedule an in-home consultation please contact Safe Nest Babyproofing at anytime.