Protecting Your Family: A Guide to Smoke Alarms

One essential element of home safety is having functional smoke alarms. Here’s why!

With the transition to daylight saving time, it’s the perfect opportunity to make sure your home is well-prepared for any emergencies. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. The Lifesavers: Smoke alarms are like silent guardians in your home. They’re designed to give you those precious seconds you need to get out safely if a fire breaks out.
  2. Regular Check-ups: Just like we go to the doctor for check-ups, smoke alarms need regular attention, too. We recommend checking them once a month to ensure they’re working as they should.
  3. The Power of Lithium: The best batteries for smoke alarms are 10-year lithium batteries. They last longer and provide reliable power, so you don’t have to worry about changing them frequently.
  4. Perfect Placement: To maximize protection, place smoke alarms in every bedroom, living area, and hallway in your home. Interconnected alarms ensure everyone in the house is alerted if there’s danger.
  5. Signs of Trouble: Keep an eye out for warning signs that your smoke alarm might need attention, such as a yellowing colour, constant chirping, or alarms going off for no reason.
  6. Monthly Battery Test: To make sure your alarms are ready when it counts, test the battery monthly by pressing and holding the test button until it beeps three times. If you encounter any issues, it’s time to replace the battery.
  7. Seek Help When Needed: If you’re not sure how to handle your smoke alarms or can’t install or replace them on your own, don’t hesitate to call in a professional. Your family’s safety is worth it.
  8. Rental Home Safety: If you’re living in a rental home, it’s essential to know that property providers have obligations to maintain smoke alarms. If you think there’s a problem with a smoke alarm, reach out to your rental provider.

In Australia, the importance of smoke alarms is underscored by laws in various states that mandate their use. Here’s a quick overview of where smoke alarms are mandatory:

  • Victoria: Smoke alarms are compulsory in all homes and residential buildings, including rental properties.
  • New South Wales: Smoke alarms are required in all homes, and legislation specifies their placement.
  • Queensland: Smoke alarms are mandatory in all bedrooms and hallways that connect bedrooms.
  • South Australia: All residential properties must have working smoke alarms.
  • Western Australia: Smoke alarms are required in all homes.
  • Tasmania: Legislation mandates smoke alarms in residential properties, including rental properties.
  • Northern Territory: Smoke alarms are mandatory in residential properties.
  • Australian Capital Territory (ACT): Smoke alarms are required in all homes, with specific placement requirements.

By ensuring that your home has properly functioning smoke alarms, you’re taking a vital step to protect your family from potential fire hazards. It’s a simple yet crucial measure that can make all the difference in an emergency. Stay safe and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with a well-protected home!

Brought to you by RACV Trades Services

See also Choice Magazine’s How to buy the Best Smoke Alarm