One of the most important appliances in your home is one that you often get annoyed with more than appreciate. Despite sometimes being a nuisance, smoke alarms can quite literally be the difference between life and death. As the saying goes, you’d rather have one and not need it, than need one and not have it. So even though testing them and replacing batteries seems like a chore as opposed to valuable preventative maintenance, you’ll be glad you kept them up to date.

Because that’s the beauty of smoke alarms: they require very little time or money to maintain, but the payoff they provide in the event something catastrophic occurs can’t be understated. They’re critically important pieces of equipment, especially in the summer, when fire and smoke are more prevalent thanks to outdoor activities that can track indoors if you’re not careful. Follow this handy guide from Home Service Heroes, and you’ll understand why smoke alarms are so vital to the safety of you and your family!

Smoke Alarms Save Lives

The life-saving ability that smoke alarms have is, to be frank, enormous. According to the Customer Product Safety Commission, roughly 2,000 people die every year from residential fires alone. And from those 2,000, around two-thirds of the lives lost result from homes where a smoke alarm either wasn’t present or wasn’t functional. Contrary to what some people might believe, deaths from house fires result from smoke and gas-related complications more than from the actual heat of the fire itself.

Gases travel much faster than fire does, so without a proper smoke detector setup in place, you might be caught off-guard.

Selecting Your Setup

The general rule of thumb is to have a smoke alarm in every room where someone sleeps, and at least one alarm per level of your home. You should also be sure to maintain regular maintenance on them: this means testing each alarm once per month, as well as replacing necessary components on a regular schedule. The batteries in each should be changed out every year, and the alarms themselves should be swapped out every 10 years.

Defining the Differences

Thankfully, there aren’t a million different types of smoke alarms you need to research when deciding which ones you should purchase. As it stands, only two types exist ionization and photoelectric smoke alarms.

  • Ionization alarms work by letting air filter into a small chamber in the device itself. When the alarm detects changes in the ions in the air of the chamber, it goes off and begins alerting you.
  • Photoelectric alarms use a small beam of light to look for differences in the air. When smoke floats across that light, this alarm begins beeping.

Either one works for the most part, and oftentimes installing each kind is recommended. However, don’t place an ionization alarm near the kitchen – it tends to go off more frequently while cooking, and that would get frustrating quickly.

There you have it. You likely already know how imperative it was to have functional smoke alarms in your home, but know you REALLY know. For all your smoke alarm needs, or for the most reliable electrical and HVAC service in Tampa, get in touch with Home Service Heroes!

Give us a call at (813) 544-4061 and schedule an appointment to get more information about how we can help you and your family out!


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