WHAT SMOKE ALARMS SHOULD I GET? AND HOW DO I MAINTAIN THEM?

All homes in Australia are required to have smoke alarms because let’s face it; it does get a bit warm down under. This means that understanding your needs for new alarms or getting to know the alarms you might already have is extremely important.

 

Perth gets extremely hot which is why we recommend to always getting an opinion from a qualified Perth technician.

The first thing you need to know is that there are two types of smoke alarms, they are battery operated alarms and hard wired alarms. However due to a change in legislation you may be required to install a specific alarm type

Battery operated alarms

Smoking AlarmThese types of alarms are mainly found in older properties both domestic and commercial as they do not meet the minimum requirements and legislation outlined by FESA. This is because they are less expensive than their counterpart. Although cheaper they can still be effective but mainly in the short term,  and for additional protection as a backup in non-mandatory areas which is why if you are purchasing or already have these units installed it is important to constantly check your alarms and re-install new ones about every five  years or sooner if they fault. On the plus side however these alarms are also very easy to install and purchase which means you can decide where and how many you would like on you property. Although this is the case we do recommend getting an electrician or someone with experience in order to determine the best choices in regards to location and amount.

 

 

 

 

ProsCons
  • Inexpensive
  • Shorter life span
  • More customisable
  • Requires a lot of maintenance
  • Able to DIY
  • No backup if batteries stop working

 

Hard wired installed alarms

If you are concerned about your fire safety then getting hard wired installed alarms is the best way to go. These alarms are on the pricier side but for good reason. They are installed and wired into your home’s electrical circuits by licensed electricians. This ensures the longevity and quality of your alarm system and the comfort of knowing an experienced professional has organised the installation. These units do not require as much maintenance as the other system as they are fully wired in and do not solely run off of batteries. They do however also include a battery backup in case of power outages or wiring faults which can occur meaning you are completely secure at all times. As fire safety is such a concern in WA many licensed Perth electricians including our own have great experience and knowledge in this area, which means you know you are getting the best of the best.

 

ProsCons
  • Longer life span
  • More expensive- but can you put a price on your family’s safety?
  • More secure
  • Less customisable
  • Installed in optimum locations
  • If any faults occur you will have to pay to get it fixed
  • Always has a backup

 

Checking my smoke alarmsChecking Smoke Alarms

Both types of systems are designed similarly when it comes to manually checking your alarms are still working. Majority of all systems now have a button placed on the outside of the unit. By pressing this button the alarm will sound and either stop pressing the button or pressing it again will stop the alarm. If the alarm sounds your unit is definitely in working order, however if no alarm sounds that is when you should either replace the unit (if battery operated) or get an electrician in as soon as possible to thoroughly check it (if manually installed).

The best and most secure way to test an alarm however is to engage a qualified electrician to inspect the unit, test the unit with specialised test equipment and finally spray artificial smoke near the alarm to simulate a real life fire condition and prove 100% the alarm is operational.

 

Contact one of our friendly staff for more information, or to arrange a safety check.

 

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