What is an Ionization Smoke Alarm?

There are two main types of home smoke alarms; ionization smoke alarms and photoelectric smoke alarms. Knowing the difference between these is essential to choosing the right smoke and fire detector for your home and family. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), roughly 96% of households in the United States have at least one smoke alarm in their home, yet it’s unlikely people truly understand the difference between the two major types of alarms. . Learn more about the difference between each type and the benefits of installing an ionization alarm in your home.

What Type of Fires Does an Ionization Alarm Detect?

Generally, ionization detectors are more responsive to flaming fires. The term “flaming” fires refers to fires resulting from flammable liquids, wood or paper. This type of fire produces a lot of flames with a limited amount of smoke. Most house fires are categorized as fast-flaming fires, which is why ionization alarms are popular in homes. To be safe, we recommend having both types of home fire detectors installed or installing dual sensor smoke alarms that detect multiple types of fires.

How do Ionization Alarms Work?

Ionization chambers are the essential difference between ionization alarms and photoelectric alarms. Within the ionization chamber, there are two plates with voltage in between them. If an electron in this space is knocked out of place due to smoke entering the chamber, it causes ionization, and, in response, the fire alarm goes off.

First Alert Ionization Smoke Detectors

At First Alert, we offer different ionization home smoke detector products, so you can pick the safety features that best suit your needs. If you don’t want to worry about keeping up with changing batteries in your smoke alarm, we recommend upgrading to First Alert’s 10-Year Battery Dual Sensor Alarm that detects smoke from both flaming and smoldering fires with a ten year battery.The battery lasts for the life of the fire alarm and eliminates the need for battery replacements.

Regardless of the ionization home smoke detector you choose for your home and your family, First Alert will help protect what matters most by providing reliable protection you can trust. Shop ionization smoke alarms.

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