“Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.”
Australia has an average of about 4500 residential fires annually. Heaters, candles, and cigarettes are the most common cause of these fires. Smoke alarms can help protect your home and save lives through early smoke detection.
Most states and territories now require all homes to be fitted with a working smoke alarm on every level. Compliance and home safety are just a few reasons it’s essential to check the status of your home’s smoke detector regularly. Knowing when and how to replace a smoke alarm battery can help save your home and, more importantly, your life.
How to Know a Smoke Alarm Needs a New Battery
There are four common types of residential smoke alarms in Australia. These are the mains powered smoke alarms with a 9-volt battery backup, mains powered smoke alarms with a 10-year lithium battery backup, 9-volt battery powered smoke alarms, and 10-year-life lithium battery-powered smoke alarms.
Regardless of the type of smoke detectors in your home, you’ll know they’re due for a battery replacement when you hear a beeping or chirping sound. This noise indicates the battery is running low. The sound differs from the typical smoke alarm warning sound, and it usually lasts a few seconds and repeats every minute.
The noise continues until you change the battery. Besides replacing the batteries, you should also test your smoke alarms monthly to ensure they’re working correctly.
Steps to Replace Smoke Alarm Battery
Here are the steps to properly replace batteries in a smoke alarm.
Prepare the tools and equipment you’ll need to replace the battery. Before accessing the unit, make sure the new batteries are the correct type. Some smoke alarm units require a screwdriver to unhook the unit and gain access to the battery compartment. You may also need a step stool or ladder to reach the ceiling.
Locate the Smoke Alarms
Identify the location of smoke detectors on every floor of your home. This step will enable you to work more efficiently and replace the battery in every unit as needed.
Remove the Old Battery
Remove the old battery once you have access to the battery compartment. After removing the old battery, you should also clean the smoke alarm and ensure no dust or debris can interfere with the unit’s ability to detect smoke.
Install the New Battery
Replace the smoke alarm battery with a new battery unit. These batteries can either be lithium batteries or standard 9-volt batteries, depending on the smoke alarm unit in your home. Be sure to properly align the positive and negative terminals.
If your unit is wired directly to your home’s electrical system, you’ll also want to check that the connections are secured before you reinstall the smoke alarm to the ceiling.
Test the Smoke Alarm
Most smoke alarm units have a green light that indicates your smoke alarm unit is working. You should also expect the unit to stop beeping or chirping once you have correctly replaced the smoke alarm battery.
To check that your smoke detector works properly, test it by locating the test button and pressing it down for a few seconds. This should trigger the smoke alarm. It will automatically stop once you release it.
The Importance of Regular Smoke Alarm Maintenance
Regular smoke alarm maintenance involves testing your smoke alarm monthly and replacing batteries immediately when they’re due for changing. These steps will ensure your device is functioning correctly.
Your survival rate in a house fire doubles with working smoke alarms in your home. Smoke alarms are also helpful in alerting you of potential fires at night, as your sense of smell diminishes when you’re asleep. A smoke detector can alert you to a possible fire even when you’re deeply asleep.
Protect Your Home Today
A working smoke detector can save your life — and your family’s. That’s why it’s essential to have your home fitted with a smoke alarm that’s compliant with state regulations. However, having a smoke alarm at home is not the final step in ensuring your home’s safety.
In addition to installing the alarms, it’s crucial to stay on top of maintenance. In addition to monthly testing and knowing how to replace a smoke alarm battery, having a professional install and maintain your smoke alarm units can help ensure your home’s defence in case of a potential fire.
Contact Glenco today to learn more about our professional smoke alarm installation and maintenance services.