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Detecting Your Smoke Alarm IQ

  1. How often should you change the batteries in your smoke detectors?Smoke alarm
  2. Should your detectors detect smoke or heat?
  3. Where should they be placed?
  4. How many carbon monoxide detectors should you have?
  5. Where should they be?

Knowing the answers to these questions not only boosts your smoke and carbon monoxide detector IQ, it could save your life.

According to a recent investigation by Good Morning America,

"When people buy smoke alarms, they may not know that there are two types on the market: the ionization alarm, which is generally faster to detect blazing fires, and photoelectric, which is generally quicker to detect smoldering fires. Ninety percent of homes have only ionization alarms, and they may not be providing all the protection people need."

Think about going to the beach - you want a sunscreen that protects from both UVA and UVB rays because both are harmful in different ways. The same idea applies to smoke detectors - you need both the ionization to detect heat, and photoelectric to detect smoke in order to ensure maximum protection.

Arlington has its own set of regulations regarding smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

Regulations require only photoelectric smoke alarms within 20 feet of a kitchen or bathroom containing a tub or shower.  For locations outside this 20' limit, dual detection must be installed (both photoelectric and ionization) through either a single device or dual device.

Carbon monoxide detectors must be on every level, and specifically in any room connected or adjacent to a garage.

The Home Advantage Team accompanies the Fire Department Inspector for an inspection prior to every closing, and you cannot close on your home without the certificate.

We take the installation and maintenance of smoke and carbon monoxide detectors seriously - not because it's our job, but because it's important to the safety of our friends and clients.

If you're smart, you will, too.