Smoke Alarm False Alarms

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Tiger Electrical

Senior Member
I installed six or seven 120V with battery backup interwired Kidde alarms (dedicated circuit, dedicated conduit) in a home that has a false alarm every 3 months or so. I've replaced 3 or 4 units that have alarmed over the past year. The home is ultra-clean Better Homes & Garden type. Any help would be appreciated.

Dave
 
false alarms on smoke detectors

false alarms on smoke detectors

check the areas that are near the smoke detectors, you may have the wrong style of detection, some will trigger on moisture from bath (showers) or a bug inside them. Your supplier or mfg. should be able to help select the correct model. Try to get the people living in the house to remember exactly what was going on when the alarm went off.
 

kkwong

Senior Member
Where are they located in relation to ceiling registers and ceiling fans? Is there a whole house fan? Are they photoelectric or ionization?

If they are near a ceiling fan/register, look in NFPA 72 for placement. Also, if I can find it, I'll pm you a link for smoke alarm placement.

If there is a whole house fan, there might be dust being kicked up.

If you've installed photoelectrics, try changing to an ionization or vice versa.

Edit to add: Here's the link: http://forums.mikeholt.com/showpost.php?p=649514&postcount=5 I thought everyone would like to see this again. :)
 
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Lxnxjxhx

Guest
It's not daily, it's not seasonal. I can't imagine what has a 3 month time constant, unless it's the service lifetime of these units or a power glitch.
Maybe Kidde can advise you.
 

Tiger Electrical

Senior Member
They are PE units and all are located according to instructions and away from the bath door, heat vents, kitchen, etc. Nothing was happening when they alarmed-4pm, 3am & 8pm. No vacuum with a dusty bag, no shower steam. Although it's possibly from dust & needs vacuum maintenance I have 50 other units in service that are not getting maintained with no false alarms.

Dave
 

roger3829

Senior Member
Location
Torrington, CT
Tiger Electrical said:
They are PE units and all are located according to instructions and away from the bath door, heat vents, kitchen, etc. Nothing was happening when they alarmed-4pm, 3am & 8pm. No vacuum with a dusty bag, no shower steam. Although it's possibly from dust & needs vacuum maintenance I have 50 other units in service that are not getting maintained with no false alarms.

Dave

I would check for spiders inside the units. I have seen them get inside and cause problems. Is it always the same detector that trips?


I hope you gave them a "flat rate cost" to solve the problem.:smile:
 

cschmid

Senior Member
are they photoelectric or ionization..temp on ionization can even be a factor..Location is about air flow over the smoke detector..Are these interconnected detectors, just battery units installed..Little more info would be nice..
 

480sparky

Senior Member
Location
Iowegia
Pull the air filter out of the furnace and see how dirty it is, and ask how often it gets changed/cleaned.

A house on the cover of BH&G can still be dusty as all git-out, and dust may be the problem. Vacuum them out with the brush attachment.
 
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