Smoke Alarms – Time to Update

I listened to home inspector today as he  inspected a house   I sold in San Jose.  He was talking about the importance of smoke alarms and how most homes only have an “ionization” or a “photoelectric” type detector   but not both.  Up to that comment I had smugly checked off that my home had a smoke alarm and we were set. I realized, however, that I didn’t even know which type I had.  Then the inspector referred to some studies that suggest people can sleep right through the constant    pitch of a smoke alarms going off – almost like getting  used to “white noise” or constant background sounds.

Enter “alarm and voice” devises and variable pitch alarms.  The newest alarms  even talk to you: “Warning, Warning, Fire, Fire“.  Then they put out a variable pitch alarm.  When the inspector mentioned “the other type of alarm: “the CO2 detector” I knew I needed to get updated.  “You know that Carbon Monoxide is called the ‘Silent Killer’, right?.  Well there is an alarm for that too”, he offered.  While I vaguely remember thinking about that in the past I did not install a CO detector in my home.

I found  “National Fire Protection Association”  website to be very helpful.  I quickly realized that my home was not adequately equipped with the most up-to-date smoke detectors nor do I have enough detectors in my two story home.   I’m headed to Lowe’s for all three types of alarms.

How about your home?  I recommend that you go to NFPA’s website