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Smoke Alarms Save Lives

December 20, 2012 - The Shaker Heights Fire Department reminds residents that the City requires the use of a photoelectric smoke alarm as the primary alarm for each required location in your home. Smoke alarms should bear the label of an approved testing agency (UL or FM).

Power Types:

Battery – Utilizes 9 volt or AA batteries.
Long-Life-Battery – Battery power may last up to 10 years
Hardwired – Wired to the home 110 volt electrical service (with battery back-up) Hardwired smoke alarms must be installed by a qualified electrician.

Sensor types:
There are three types of sensors: photoelectric, ionization and a combination or dual-sensor alarm, which incorporates both sensors in one smoke alarm.

The photoelectric smoke alarm is less prone to nuisance false alarms from cooking and steam. It also responds faster to smoldering type fires that are common in residences and cause the most injuries and deaths. Photoelectric smoke alarms are required in Shaker Heights as the primary alarm. Dual sensor photoelectric/ionization alarms do not meet the requirements for a primary alarm as they are still prone to false alarms. Dual sensor and ionization smoke alarms can be used in addition to photoelectric alarms.

Locations:
Smoke alarms are required on every level of the home includ- ing the basement and outside of every sleeping area.We also recommend a smoke alarm be placed in each bedroom. More alarms = more protection. There are additional require- ments for multi-family dwellings.

Smoke alarms should be mounted on the ceiling or high on the wall (smoke rises). Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Testing and Maintenance:

  • Push button to test smoke alarms at least monthly.
  • Replace batteries in 9 volt or AA type smoke alarms twice a year. (Change your clocks – change your batteries.)
  • If the alarm “chirps” warning that the battery is low, replace the battery immediately.
  • Replace long-life battery smoke alarms at the end of their recommended life or sooner if they don’t respond properly. (10 years maximum)
  • Replace all smoke alarms including hard wired alarms when they are 10 years old or sooner if they don’t respond properly.
  • Clean your smoke alarm at least once a year.Vacuum out any dust or cobwebs that have

Additional tips:

  • Consider installing interconnected smoke alarms (wired or wireless).When one alarm sounds, every alarm throughout the house sounds.
  • In the event of a false alarm, never remove the battery or disconnect the power source. Simply fan the smoke or steam away from the smoke alarm until the alarm stops.
  • If a contractor or supplier is installing your smoke alarm make sure you are provided the
    manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Smoke alarms and batteries will be provided free to resi- dents who cannot afford them. The Fire Department will also install smoke alarms for residents who require assistance.We will also provide guidance on the proper placement of smoke alarms in your home.
  • Smoke alarms are one component of a complete home escape plan. Have a plan and practice it.

 

Thursday, October 2, 2014

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