When should a smoke alarm be replaced? Survey shows 90% of people don’t know
Quincy, MA – Nine out of 10 people in the United States don’t know how often smoke alarms should be replaced, according to the results of a recent survey conducted by the National Fire Protection Association.
Alarms should be replaced 10 years from the date of manufacture – not the date that the alarm was purchased or installed – printed on the side or back of the device, NFPA states in a press release.
Other findings from the survey:
- 50 percent said they have three or more smoke alarms in their residence.
- 19 percent reported that the oldest smoke alarm in their residence is more than 10 years old.
- 18 percent of respondents said they aren’t sure how many years their current smoke alarms have been in place.
NFPA recommends testing smoke alarms once a month, and replacing the batteries if the alarm starts to make a chirping noise. According to NFPA, 24 percent of smoke alarm failures are caused by dead batteries.
“Working smoke alarms reduce the risk of dying in a home fire in half,” Lorraine Carli, vice president of outreach and advocacy for NFPA, said in the release. “That’s why it’s so important to make sure they’re working properly.”