Smoke Alarm Tips

The U.S. Fire Administration offers smoke alarm tips.

  • One of the best ways to protect yourself and your family is to have a working smoke alarm that can sound fast for both a fire that has flames, and a smoky fire that has fumes without flames. It is called a Dual Sensor Smoke Alarm.
  • Place a smoke alarm on the ceiling of every level of your home and inside and outside all bedrooms. Children and older people can sleep though the loud sound of a smoke alarm. Make sure your escape plan includes someone that can help children and others wake up immediately to escape from the home.
  • If you keep your bedroom doors closed, place a smoke alarm on the ceiling of each bedroom.
  • Check smoke alarms monthly by pressing the test button.
  • Never take smoke alarm batteries out to put into other items like games or remote controls.
  • Teach children what the smoke alarm sounds like and what to do when they hear the alarm sound.
  • If there is a fire, leave the home right away by crawling low under the smoke and never go back inside.
  • If smoke from cooking makes the alarm sound, press the "hush" button, if your alarm has one. You can also turn on the kitchen fan, open a window or wave a towel near the alarm until it stops making the sound. Never take the battery out of the alarm.
  • Most alarms need a new battery at least once a year. Some smoke alarms have batteries that last for up to 10 years. If your smoke alarm is more than 10 years old, replace it with a new alarm and battery.
  • If you rent, talk to your landlord about placing a working smoke alarm in your home. You still need to buy a new battery at least once a year for the alarm.

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