Why the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends you replace all fire detectors after no more than 10 years.
Smoke detectors are one of the most important safety features in your home. Properly installed, they serve as a built-in early warning system to allow you and your family to escape fire-inflicted bodily harm. Especially during the holiday season when everyone is busy and working in the kitchen cooking.
With that comforting thought comes a major responsibility. And that, simply stated, is to make sure your fire detectors are prepared to do the job they were built for…without fail.
Other than routine battery checks and replacement, the NFPA recommends that you replace all smoke detectors after 10 years.
- On average, 3% of all smoke detectors fail each year;
- After 10 years, a smoke detector is 30% likely to fail;
- After 15 years, the likelihood of failure are 50%;
- After 30 years, studies show, it’s a virtual guarantee that a smoke detector will fail.
Are you the super cautious type? Then replace your smoke detectors as often as you feel necessary. But 10 years, says the NFPA, is a reasonable standard to help us live by. And we happen to agree.
Just how great is the risk from fire? On a yearly basis, over 3,200 people throughout the country lose their lives from residential fires. As far as we’re concerned, that’s 3,200 too many. So here are some additional home safety tips from the professionals at Gold Medal.
- In-home safety can be enhanced by as much as 80% when you install an automatic fire sprinkler system along with smoke detectors.
- Smoke detectors should be placed in all hallways leading to sleeping quarters. If your home has more than one level, install a smoke detector on each level near the stairs.
- Let’s dispense with a popular myth: pressing the test button on your smoke detector is not a valid test of whether or not it’s still working. All that tells you is that the unit still has power. It’s far more important to test the smoke detector’s sensor. And to do that, we recommend you purchase SMOKE CHECK (by Some Safeguard)…it’s a non-toxic, smoke-like substance that tests the sensor, electronics and power source all at the same time.
- If you even suspect there’s a fire in progress, feel the bedroom door with the back of your hand before you attempt to exit. Then, crawl out to stay below the smoke.
As you can see, preventing fire – or, knowing how to respond in case of fire – is everyone’s business. Ours included! That’s why Applewood Plumbing Heating & Electric is pleased to offer you a $50 discount on a fire prevention project – including smoke detector or carbon monoxide detector installation.