A well-maintained smoke detector can mean the difference between life and death. Use the following guidelines to always remain optimally protected:
- Test the smoke detector at least once a month. In most cases, a test button is provided on the smoke detector for this purpose. It may help to schedule a set time for this, such as the first Monday of each month.
- Remove dust from the smoke detector monthly. You can do this with a duster, or possibly with your vacuum cleaner. This ensures that the detection chamber is always easily accessible and smoke is detected more quickly. It also reduces the risk of false alarms due to accumulated dust in the detection chamber.
- Never remove the battery from the Smoke Alarm, except to replace it. It can help to schedule a specific time for battery replacement as well, especially in the case of 9V battery powered detectors that need to be replaced annually, such as when they go from summer to winter hours. With some smoke detectors, you can't even replace the battery. In that case, the battery often has a 10-year life.
- Never paint over your smoke detector and never plug the holes. This can cause the detector to malfunction.
- Replace a detector completely after 10 years. All smoke detectors should be completely replaced after 10 years. This is the only way to continue guaranteeing reliability.
Want more information?
Then be sure to check out the articles "What to watch out for when buying a smoke detector" and "Why doesn't the smoke detector go off when I press the test button?".