When to Change the Batteries in Your Smoke Detector

A woman reaches up to a smoke detector on the ceiling.

How Often Should You Change the Batteries in Your Smoke Detector

The smoke alarms throughout your home help play a crucial role in keeping you and your family safe by alerting you to potential dangers. However, the best smoke alarms provide no value if they do not have working batteries. It is important that you check and test your home smoke detectors often and replace the batteries in order to ensure the detectors are working properly.

What Smoke Alarm Do You Have?

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends changing the batteries in your smoke detectors every 6 months. At First Alert, we offer 10-year smoke alarms that have a built-in 10-year battery, which eliminates the need for battery replacements for the life of the detectors. We also offer hardwired alarms with a battery backup, for continuous protection during power outages.

Testing and Changing Your Smoke Detector Batteries

It is recommended you test your alarms at least once a month to ensure they are working properly, and replace the batteries in your smoke alarm every six months. The detector itself should be replaced at least every ten years. For 10-year lithium-powered smoke alarms, you won’t need to replace the battery. Instead, replace the entire alarm after 10 years from the manufacture date on the back of the alarm. If your detector is hardwired into your home’s electrical system, replace the backup battery at least every 6 months and replace the smoke detector itself at least every 10 years.

Signs You Need to Replace the Batteries In Your Smoke Alarm

You’ll likely notice a high-pitched chirping noise coming from your smoke alarm when it is time for the batteries to be changed. It is best to be proactive and change the batteries in your smoke detectors before that noise occurs. When you change the batteries in one alarm, make sure you change the batteries in the rest of the alarms in your home as well. A helpful reminder to check your smoke alarms and change the batteries every 6 months is Daylight Saving Time. Check and test your smoke and fire detectors when you change your clocks.

Installing smoke alarms will help keep you and your family safe. Browse our website to learn more about smoke detectors or other fire-related equipment such as fire escape ladders, fire extinguishers, safes, and more!

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