Overview of Smoke Alarm
Fires are a beguiling phenomenon notorious for razing down entire buildings in the eerie quiet of midnight while people lie asleep– unaware of the danger in their midst. Every year, thousands of homeowners die in household fires and numerous get injured. The common cause is the sheer absence of safety mechanisms such as smoke detectors that could have fended off the travesty that are man-made fires.
Not to mention the billions in property damages annually! Studies suggest, many victims do not die of burns, but rather a smoke inhalation! Smoke alarms or smoke detectors are the best way to prevent these catastrophes. They stand guard round the clock and sound an alarm after sensing smoke; buying precious time for a family to escape.
List of Key Points to Consider While Buying the Best Smoke Detectors Available in the Market
Oftentimes, people skimp on installing smoke alarms in their homes due to incomplete knowledge about their types or specs to home in on the best fit for their surroundings. Here’s what everyone needs to know before buying smoke detectors.
#1)Battery or Hardwired?
Right off the bat, the most important decision for anyone to be a smoke slayer, should they buy a battery or hardwired smoke alarm? Smoke detectors are predominantly battery-powered, albeit, some are installed during the construction of a house and wired straight into the home’s electrical setup. Smoke detectors that run on household current do have a battery backup in case a fire knocks out the house’s electricity. After around 6 months, batteries of both hard-wired and battery-operated smoke detectors make a resounding trill ominous of expiry calling for a REPLACEMENT!!!
#2)Types of Smoke alarms
Let’s delve into the three major types of smoke alarms, namely:
a) Ionization alarms
Ionization alarms are positively and negatively charged alarms that ionize the air between two electrodes and create a small current inside the chamber. They are perfectly apt for dusty areas, such as the area near bathrooms, lofts, et al.
Caveat: These alarms are very sensitive to smaller particles of smoke and can be triggered by cooking in kitchen– causing false fire alarms!!!
b) Optical alarms
Perhaps the finest alarms in present-times, they contain light sensors coupled with infrared LED, which checks for smoke particles by pulsing a beam of light into the sensor chamber. They are suitable for landings/hallways, bedrooms, and kitchens thanks to their trait of not being prone to spurious alarms from cooking.
c) Heat alarms
Instead of smoke, these alarms detect hot air or heat when the temperature within the sensor chamber crosses the 58 degrees Celsius threshold. Heat alarms are also not disposed to counterfeit alarms from cooking or exhaust fume and can be put even in kitchens. However, they have a slower response rate than smoke alarms.
#3)Smoke alarm Features
Contemporary times call for state-of-the-art smoke alarms. Modern smoke detectors possess a remote-controlled mute button that can be linked to TV remotes to hush bogus alarms. Also, some alarms comprise of safety lights that illuminate when the alarm goes off.
#4)Size of your house
If you reside in a large house, get a wirelessly linked smoke alarm system or purchase individual smoke detectors that are wired together; so that when one of them detects smoke (read:trouble), they all start buzzing in unison! However, people in downsized dwellings should fix smoke alarms in each room of their abode including the attic.
#5)Your spending capacity
The quality of smoke alarms is equivalent to the moolah in your pockets. That doesn’t mean you ought to shell out a hefty fortune to get a terrific smoke alarm. A pricier model may get you extra features though- such as wirelessly linked capabilities, or an 8-year battery warranty! Some really top-notch brands that guarantee value for money in mid-price range are Ceasefire, Morley, System Sensor, etc.