Most of the time, while we believe we are safe and comfortable in our homes, we feel complacent about things that might actually happen. A fire hazard may be too far to think about just because it isn’t happening. We tend to regard our homes as our haven of peace and security and that every place is safe at all times.
In reality, our homes have built-in fire hazards which we may be aware of. Combustible elements and materials actually surround the house, and a simple trigger can ignite a fire. Think about the gas, fuel oil in the garage, propane used in heating, or electrical circuits that might have been compromised are all threats to fire.
A house fire can happen anytime. At most, they happen during hot months. But this doesn’t excuse the possibility of fire on any season. We are more often confident of industrial places where security and fire alarms automatically sound off and because there are more fire protection devices installed in these places. Since a house is smaller, we shun the idea that it those smaller fire hazards cannot injure lives or damage properties.
Why We Need Smoke Alarms
When there’s smoke there’s fire. The onset of fire begins when a certain point has been reached during the combustion reaction. With the proper amount of heat, fuel, and an oxidising agent (oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and water vapour) combined together, a flame could ignite.
In most homes, where loads of flammable materials can be found, fire can start anywhere. Imagine the devices we use each day that are made of plastic or plastic materials, they can generate heat and smoke. This is where smoke alarms play their part.
Smoke alarms are needed in our homes to protect the house from fire. The smoke alarm is built with sensors that detect the build-up of smoke coming from flammable and combustible materials around. It is crucial to check if your smoke alarms are properly working because if not, the chance of surviving a fire is very low.
How it works
There are two types of smoke alarms that work in different ways; the ionization and photoelectric smoke alarms.
Ionization smoke alarm—built with an ionization chamber where smoke enters. This chamber has two electrically charged plates, which contain radioactive materials in between them. When smoke disrupts the flow of ions, interfering with the electric current, it activates the alarm.
Photoelectric smoke detector—built with a beam that can only be triggered when it senses smoke or smoke particles. The passing of smoke through the light beam disrupts the straight line and the smoke detector goes off immediately. For hotter incidents and bigger flames, photoelectric detectors react faster.
There are also dual-sensor smoke alarms available. Typically they are built both with photoelectric and ionization detectors.
Where is the best place to install smoke alarms?
Building regulations in the UK have certain specifications for the best place to install smoke alarms. Fire safety is one of the aspects the regulations focus on with regards to a warning, escape routes, access to firefighters and preventing the spread of fire.
Your electrical builder or experts would recommend installing smoke alarms to places where heat signatures are high. Installing dual-sensor smoke alarms is a smart move to equip your home for maximum protection. Smoke alarms are typically better installed on ceilings or high walls. The tendency of smoke is always to go upward than sideways, so always have a keen mind for the best placements if you prefer the walls. Though the kitchen is the primary source of heat due to the cooking appliances, never install smoke alarms near them, as the smoke devices would sense a fake fire. Keep a good distance between the alarms and the appliances.
Electricians from Electricians Portsmouth UK will guide you through with your smoke alarms in all aspects of the installation.
To ensure safety against fire, smoke alarms should be installed in several areas in your home. Check the following points on the smoke alarm installation.
- Living room and bedrooms
- Basement or attic
- Near the kitchen
Once you already have installed smoke alarms in every room, check their functionality every now and then. Smoke alarms use batteries. When the battery runs out, immediately replace it. For better buying options on smoke alarms, ask your electrical service provider on the recommended smoke alarms for your home. Talk to us or visit our website. Here, at Electricians Portsmouth UK, we make sure your life is safe and happy.