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Old 11-11-2008, 04:11 PM   #1
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


My boyfriend removed an old tan fire alarm from our upstairs and just pulled out the wires from the alarm (it was powered by electricity rather than battery).

Anyways our new white fire alarm is battery powered so we just screwed it in the ceiling and left the old wires just dangling. Now I am so worried that this could be a fire hazard! Is there anything we need to do with these wires that are not attached to anything? Thank you!

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Old 11-11-2008, 04:42 PM   #2
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


Find the other end and disconnect them, then remove them.

I would have put in another fire alarm powered by 120 volts.

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Old 11-11-2008, 05:10 PM   #3
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i had to install mine on their own circuit to the box to meet code, so if you plan on removing the wires.... ummmmm... sure you don't want to just buy another ac/dc one? (the ac STILL need batteries for power outages, or they will 'chirp') *good luck*

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Old 11-11-2008, 05:37 PM   #4
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


The smoke detector that you removed was most likely a "hardwired" smoke detector which is tied electrically to the other smoke detectors in the house and should not be removed. If it needed to be replaced it should have been replaced with a new detector identical to the old one.

Hardwired smokes are powered by 120 volts and have a third wire that is a low voltage signal wire that connects all of the detectors together so when one goes off they all go off.

These setups are required in most areas, and removing them would be a violation of the fire codes.
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Old 11-11-2008, 06:13 PM   #5
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


Grab a wire in each hand. If everything turns purple, they're hot. Twist them together and be done with it.
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Old 11-11-2008, 06:30 PM   #6
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Grab a wire in each hand. If everything turns purple, they're hot. Twist them together and be done with it.

Do what????
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Old 11-11-2008, 08:42 PM   #7
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


cut em and nut em
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Old 11-11-2008, 09:26 PM   #8
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


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Originally Posted by kennzz05 View Post
cut em and nut em
Nope, you cannot do that. That would be a violation of the electrical code ( and maybe your local fire code).

I would get one compatible with the other ones and be done.

Last edited by rgsgww; 11-11-2008 at 09:34 PM.
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Old 11-11-2008, 10:59 PM   #9
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


I think you need a new boyfriend, sorry could not resist. why not tell mr. I know it all, to install the same product he removed, since it was probably installed to begin with for a reason.
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Old 11-11-2008, 11:08 PM   #10
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


Definately should've installed an AC smoke detector in place of the old one, not just a battery powered one. The unterminated wires are a hazard (fire and electrocution). Code requires hardwired smokes, and your home apparently has (or at least had) them.
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Old 11-11-2008, 11:12 PM   #11
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


Quote:
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Grab a wire in each hand. If everything turns purple, they're hot. Twist them together and be done with it.
Not trying to sound like anyone's dad...But...
Although I get the humor, we have to remember that this is a DIY site and the OP very possibly has no idea that there is a life safety hazard in touching these wires or twisting them together. Better safe than sorry, so save the jokes when there's even the slightest possibility that a newbie will take you literally.
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Old 11-12-2008, 02:20 AM   #12
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


The old wires likely still have the female plastic plug that the old detector used. They are likely safe as-is if so, but I do second the general opinion that you should replace a hardwire with a hardwire. Even wal-mart carries hardwire Firex brand these days.
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Old 11-12-2008, 04:15 AM   #13
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


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The old wires likely still have the female plastic plug that the old detector used.
unLESS, the bf used his handy-dandy pocket knife and sliced the whole thing off..... and thanks kc, for saying what so many of us were no doubt thinking.
one forseeable small problem in replacing the unit is SOMEone decided that there should not be a standard mounting ring setup, so be sure to replace with same BRAND if going that route, or it may not clip on right. (same with the plugin to the unit) time to go test all my circuits with my tongue now....

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Old 11-12-2008, 10:42 AM   #14
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


Chances are if you have hard wired smokes, you need to have then by code.


And whats up with people giving advice that are obviously not armed with the knowledge to do so? someone here is going to get someone killed.


"cut em and nut em"???

I think that would be a fitting punishment for you.
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Old 11-12-2008, 03:14 PM   #15
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Okay to leave wires dangling?


Have the former detector replaced with a similar type ac/dc model then either use the battery elsewhere there is none or give it to someone truly in need of it!

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