Differences In Residential Fire Alarms
In the ongoing effort to keep your family safe from danger, you probably own some sort of residential fire alarm system, whether it's a single smoke detector or an elaborate system that include monitoring by a company. If you're not sure of what the best system is for you, then you should take a look at the different types of residential fire alarm systems and select the kind that works for your budget and to allow the most safety.
Smoke detectors are the most common form of residential fire alarm systems, and usually consist of a small machine that's mounted on the ceiling. Many houses only have one, though if you do intend to use smoke detectors, the safest way to spread them out is one to each room, except for the kitchen, where it's a little too likely to react to cooking. In homes with two stories, it's particularly important to have at least one smoke detector downstairs and upstairs.
Most of these residential fire alarm systems use battery power, and a general rule of thumb to make sure that the battery will always be good is to give it a new battery once a year-many areas promote the day we turn the clocks back in fall for this. Even if you don't use the same day to change the batteries, make sure they're replaced at least once a year.
Systems With Monitoring
The next step up is to purchase an entire residential fire alarm system. This is usually installed along with a burglar alarm system, and will contain a central control panel that hooks up to several smoke alarms and heat detectors. Some of these systems will include remote monitoring from a company that will contact fire and medical authorities in the event of a fire. These residential fire alarm systems are usually more reliable than smoke detectors alone, since they contain more sophisticated equipment and have the additional advantage of being run off the house power, usually with battery backup in the event of a power outage.
The disadvantage to this system is the cost of installation, which often runs up towards the cost of a good personal computer, and the monitoring service does require a small monthly fee. However, if you can make room in the budget for it, the enhanced reliability and the ability to put more sophisticated detectors in some places, such as the kitchen, are good reasons to purchase such a system. But whether you go for the less expensive route or for something with extra features, make sure you have some sort of residential fire alarm system in the house for the safety of your family.