Smoke alarms are an important part of our strategy for keeping us safe if there should be a house fire. It’s important to check and change batteries regularly – I have a friend who puts in new batteries every New Year’s Day. It’s an easy date to remember and it’s often one that people spend at home without a huge amount to do, so it’s ideal for a little chore like this. Might be worth being careful on any chairs or ladders if you have a hangover though.
Regularly testing your smoke alarm is a must and something that can often get neglected as day-to-day family life takes over. It’s worth making it a part of your routine and checking on a set day each month. Maybe the first of each month would work for you or perhaps pay day would be easier to remember.
Now I knew about the importance of checking batteries, but I hadn’t realised that you should replace your smoke alarm regularly too. The sensors in smoke alarms start to degrade after they are first activated and all smoke alarms have a life expectency. While your alarm will still function when this date is reached, it may no longer be sensitive enough to detect smoke within the time limits laid down in the British Standards and may start to behave erratically.It makes perfect sense though and they aren’t expensive items to replace, but in any case it’s difficult to put a price on safety. We’ve teamed up with FireAngel to work with them on their ‘Check the Date’ campaign, which aims to raise awareness with homeowners and parents to ensure they’re replacing their smoke every ten years. If your alarms are older (and I think hand on heart at least one or two of our three are), you need to be looking at replacing them as they can become ineffective.
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