In the event of a fire in your home or business, a fire alarm or smoke detector might be your first and last line of defense. These items will let you know that a fire is taking place and give you the time you will need to respond accordingly. In some cases, that might mean putting a small fire out with a fire extinguisher. In others, it might mean getting out of your home or business as quickly as you possibly can due to a larger fire. Either way, it’s important to test your fire alarm or smoke detector on a regular basis. Here are some tips for doing it:
Test Your Fire Alarm or Smoke Detector as Often as You Can
The U.S. Fire Administration recommends that home and business owners test their fire alarms and smoke detectors at least once every six months. Batteries in smoke detectors should also be replaced at least twice every year. Moreover, while these are both good recommendations, you can and should check your fire alarm and smoke detectors for functionality more often if you can. The last thing you want is for a fire to take place and your fire alarm or smoke detector to be on the fritz.
Tell Your Family or Employees Before You Begin Testing a Fire Alarm or Smoke Detector
While it’s important for you to test your fire alarm or smoke detector as often as you can, you should alert those in your home or business before you do it. You don’t want to actually alarm them and make them think there’s really a fire taking place. So before you get started, let them know that you’re planning on testing your fire alarm or smoke detector. And while you’re at it, you might also want to use it as an opportunity to briefly discuss the exit strategies you have in place in the event of a real fire.
Replace your fire alarm or smoke detector as necessary
While they might be able to last longer than this, the U.S. Fire Administration warns home and business owners not to use smoke detectors for more than 10 years. Even if you test and maintain them regularly, they aren’t designed to last for more than a decade. So in addition to testing your fire alarms or smoke detectors, you should also consider replacing them with newer models every 10 years or so.
Do you need to purchase parts to repair your existing fire alarm or smoke detector? Or do you want to replace your fire alarm or smoke detector with a newer device? Life Safety Consultants can help with all of your fire alarm needs. Call us at 888-557-0558 to see what we can do for you.