Today’s modern homes and fireplaces are extremely safe. We’ve certainly come a long way in preventing hazards and having warning systems to alert us in the event disaster strikes. This is exactly why you need to know where to install smoke detectors in your home. Strategic placement of smoke detectors can be life-saving if an unexpected freak accident happens.
Where to Install Smoke Detectors
Knowing the best place to install smoke detectors can mean saving your home and family if a fire emergency ever happened. Let’s take a look at what to do.
Use Dependable Smoke Detectors
Don’t skimp on safety. Use dependable, high-quality name brands only when installing smoke detectors. Some reputable brands include Nest Protect, First Alert, and Kidde.
Ensure your smoke detectors are hard-wired into the wall so that there is no chance of failure due to a dead battery. Hundreds of fire-related deaths occur every year from battery-operated smoke detectors that didn’t work due to expired batteries.
Although combination units for smoke detector/CO2 detector in one are available, some experts recommend keeping smoke detectors and CO2 alarms separate since they require different criteria for installation. If installing combo-units, look for location-specific alarm models for the location it will be placed in. For example, if the detection unit will be in a hallway, make sure the unit is specific to protect hallways.
Image from Amazon
Where to Install Smoke Detectors
You may be wondering, “How many smoke detectors are required in a home?” It depends on the size of the home and number of sleeping rooms you have. In regards to where to install smoke detectors, the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) requires there to be a smoke alarm in every sleeping room, outside every sleeping area, and on every level of the home, including the basement. Additionally, larger homes require even more smoke detectors.
For smoke detector placement in bedroom areas, install on the ceiling just inside the bedroom door- never near the window where drafts can interfere. Also, install alarms in the following areas:
- outside the sleeping areas
- in common areas such as living rooms
- near the stairway
- in the laundry room
- in the kitchen
- on every level of the home, including the basement and/or attic.
For the utmost safety, connect all the alarms so that if one sounds, they all sound.
Avoid Installing Detectors in These Areas
Correct smoke alarm position is critical for safety. Understanding where to install smoke detectors is important for successful hazard prevention, which includes knowing where not to install detectors. Avoid installing smoke detectors in the following areas.
- in air streams near kitchens, near vents or drafty areas (i.e. windows)
- in very damp or steamy areas (near showers, dishwashers, saunas, etc.)
- where temperatures are regularly below 40 degrees or above 100 degrees Fahrenheit (i.e. outdoor rooms, unfinished attics/basements)
- directly above cooking stove or range
- “dead spaces“
Check out this helpful smoke detector placement diagram:
Image from Kidde
Fireplace Safety Tips
Knowing where to install smoke detectors is just the beginning. Practice key fireplace safety tips to prevent fires and have peace of mind that your family is safe. Keep your fireplace & chimney clean to avoid fires. Modern fireplaces are extremely safe, but they still require maintenance and service to stay that way.
Dryer fires are a leading cause of house fires. Clean the lint trap with every load and clean dryer vents thoroughly every 6 months to avoid this potential fire hazard.
In addition to smoke detectors and CO2 alarms, keep fire extinguishers in strategic places throughout the house, such as in the kitchen, garage, near the water heater, and on every floor no more than 40 feet apart.
If you are looking to update your fireplace or do a complete overhaul into a new modern fireplace, then you need a fireplace dealer that consults with you and knows exactly what you want. At The Fireplace Place, we offer free design consultation to help you find a solution to the fireplace of your dreams!