The 411 on Smoke Alarms

By Seacoast Security | Oct 09, 2012

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), “The reality is that when fire strikes, your home could be engulfed in smoke and flames in just a few minutes.”  It’s scary, but it’s true.  

Smoke alarms are on the mind as Fire Prevention Week gets underway across the country.  When was the last time you tested your smoke alarm?  According to the NFPA, about two-thirds of home fire deaths between 2005 and 2009 were the result of fires in home with no smoke alarms, or no working smoke alarms.  When an alarm fails, it’s usually because the batteries are missing or dead.  In fact, almost one quarter of smoke alarm failures were due to dead batteries.

The NFPA has some information about smoke alarms that you will find useful:

  • Install smoke alarms on every level of your home.
  • An alarm should be installed outside every separate sleeping area.  New homes are required to have a smoke alarm in every sleeping room, and all smoke alarms must be interconnected.
  • Alarms can be interconnected when they are hard-wired on your home’s electrical current or Seacoast Security Alarm systems.  Regardless of the fire’s location, every alarm will sound, giving you the advantage of an early warning.
  • If you or someone in your home is deaf or hard of hearing, have a technician install an alarm that combines flashing lights, vibration, and sound.
  • Smoke alarms should be mounted high on the walls or on the ceiling.  Alarms mounted on walls must be located no farther than 12 inches from the adjoining ceiling surface.
  • If your ceilings are peaked, install the alarm within 36 inches horizontally of the peak, but not closer than 4 inches vertically to the peak.
  • On sloped ceilings that rise greater than 1 foot in 8 feet horizontally, alarms must be located within 36 inches of the high side of the ceiling, but not closer than 4 inches from the adjoining wall surface.
  • Smoke alarms must not remain in service longer than 10 years from the date of manufacture.  We recommend having a trained professional replace your alarms if they are out-of-date.


At Seacoast Security, our technicians can install and monitor your smoke alarms.  The most important thing to do during a house fire is to get out and stay out. With Seacoast Security monitoring your home, you and your family can use your escape plan to get out of the house while our monitoring team notifies the fire department.  We are committed to installing the best alarm systems for our clients that meet their individual needs, keeping them as safe as possible.

Seacoast Security is a full-service security company with over 80 friendly, knowledgeable staff, a fleet of service vehicles, and five offices in Maine and New Hampshire. For more information on security systems visit our website, Facebook page or give us a call at (800) 654-8800.

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