Smoke Alarm Problems

Posted on: November 22nd, 2011 by Glen No Comments

How to fix random, nuisance false smoke/fire alarm/detector problems, and other common electrical problems with residential smoke alarms & fire detectors.

My smoke detector/alarm just started beeping / chirping about every 30 seconds.

Replace all the batteries in all smoke detectors at the same time. If one battery in the system is bad, it can cause all the units to beep or chirp in your home. P.S. New batteries can be defective, so you may need to try a couple of batteries to make sure.

Sometimes, resetting older smoke alarms is required. Disconnect the power, remove the battery and then press the test button to discharge the residual power before installing the new battery.

The smoke detector/alarm just randomly goes into full blown alarm mode for no apparent reason.

Have you checked your smoke alarm?

Dirt, dust or even high humidity levels inside the smoke detectors are very common reasons for false alarms. Small bugs or spiders crawling around in the smoke detector unit can interrupt the sensor beam, and is more common at nighttime. Disconnect the power and then use a can of compressed air (keyboard cleaner) or your vacuum to clean/remove foreign particles from the smoke detector(s).

Over time hair spray, perfumes, paint fumes, greasy cooking smoke, candle smoke, cigarette smoke, dust and other airborne contaminates build up on the sensor causing nuisance false alarms. Replace dirty units with a new smoke alarm/detector(s). It's recommended to replace all your smoke alarms or fire detectors every 10 years or sooner with new units. Even quick air temperature changes can result in random false alarms.

P.S. Don't try rinsing out or washing any electrical sensor, device or smoke detector/ alarm.


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