Get a smoke alarm - it could save your life!
Fires happen when you least expect them, often during the night.
They also spread very quickly, damaging property, injuring and killing people.
But the real killer is smoke. If you’re asleep when a fire starts and you don’t have a smoke alarm to wake you, you are unlikely to survive. Smoke can suffocate you in just three breaths – you could be dead before the flames reach you.
Fitting your own smoke alarms
Always fit your smoke alarms where you will be able to hear them throughout the home – at least one alarm on each level of your home is recommended. Alarms should not be fitted in or near the kitchen or any bathrooms, as steam or cooking fumes may cause false alarms.
Fit smoke alarms on the ceiling, as near as possible to the centre of the room – the alarms should be positioned at least 30cm away from any wall or light fitting. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the fitting and maintenance of your smoke alarms.
Beeping smoke alarms
If your smoke alarm is chirping like a budgie then the battery has expired and you need to take action now - but don’t worry, it’s a straightforward job.
Fire Angel alarms fitted by Kent Fire and Rescue Service have a 10-year battery life. The batteries in these smoke alarms cannot be replaced, but the good news is that if they are less than 10 years old they can be replaced for free. Contact Sprue on 0800 141 2561 for free advice and service.
Replacement is a very simple job. Grip the alarm and do a quarter turn to remove it from the base plate. If you can’t safely change the smoke alarm yourself please ask a relative or friend to help.
If you are unable to do this or you have a different type of smoke alarm, please phone us on 0800 923 7000 for further advice.
If you have a Fire Angel ST-622 smoke alarm with an expiry date of 2025 onwards, you can press the centre button to silence the chirping for eight hours, But if you do it more than seven times, the alarm may no longer work.
If it is more than two years since we fitted the alarm or you think your circumstances have changed you may be entitled to another home safety visit. Please phone us on 0800 923 7000 to find out.
Unfortunately we are can’t provide maintenance or service for hard-wired alarms. If the property is rented please contact your landlord for advice. If the property is owned by you then the problem may still be a low battery that you can replace yourself, alternatively you may need to contact a qualified electrician.
Carbon monoxide detectors
Ideally, you should put a carbon monoxide detector in or near every room with a heating or cooking appliance. They can be battery operated or mains powered by plugging directly into a mains socket. Find out more about the risks of carbon monoxide.