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-   -   smoke detectors going off for no reason? (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/smoke-detectors-going-off-no-reason-12467/)

arichard21 10-17-2007 07:03 AM

smoke detectors going off for no reason?
 
so there i am, rubbing down the swedish bowling cheerleaders with oil when one looks at me and says...

BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!
smoke alarm going off. i jump out of bed, and by the time i got into the hallway, they stopped. checked all the rooms, no smoke, no fire.
they went off for a total of about 30-45 seconds. any idea why then would have gone off like that for no reason??
on a related note, with regards to a co2 detector, how would you know if it was a false alarm or not? we currently do NOT have one, so i know thats not what set the alarms off... any ideas?

NateHanson 10-17-2007 08:26 AM

Get the CO alarm, and only worry about false alarms if you have reason to believe that they're false (like FD tests and tells you there's no CO reading). I've never had a false alarm, and in 4 years of fire-fighting (in my pre-kids days) I never saw a false CO alarm.

Best to assume a CO alarm is going off for a good reason and call the FD. They'll do their own reading, and find the source.

arichard21 10-17-2007 08:45 AM

this was not a false alarm of a co... it was a false smoke alarm.

NateHanson 10-17-2007 08:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by arichard21 (Post 68523)
on a related note, with regards to a co2 detector, how would you know if it was a false alarm or not? we currently do NOT have one, so i know thats not what set the alarms off... any ideas?

I was replying to this part of your message.

arichard21 10-17-2007 09:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NateHanson (Post 68545)
I was replying to this part of your message.


okay thats cool.

so any thoughts about the first part with the smokes?

HouseHelper 10-17-2007 10:17 AM

Clean them and/or replace the batteries (if present).

Gerry Kiernan 10-17-2007 10:48 AM

Some smoke alarms are heat sensitive, and some are dust sensitive. I have found that any smoke alarm, near the kitchen, has a tendancy to go off if the oven is opened while operating. The same smoke alarm will sometimes go off if the toster is being used. It is a bit of a pain. The same smoke alarm went off when the electric floor heater came on for the first time in several months. That could have been heat sensitivity, or possibly there was dust on the heater element that burned off at first useage.

As far as the batteries go, replacing them annually is usually sufficient. Most smoke alarms will give out a little chirp, every few minutes, if the battery is getting low.

As far as yours going off, check for any heat or dust source near the alarm, or as in my case, if your heating just came on for the first time in some months, that could have triggered it.

If all else fails, replace the smoke alarm with a new one. They are dirt cheap now, and the extra measure of security is well worth the occasional annoyance.

Good Luck
Gerry

arichard21 10-17-2007 11:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Gerry Kiernan (Post 68572)
Some smoke alarms are heat sensitive, and some are dust sensitive. I have found that any smoke alarm, near the kitchen, has a tendancy to go off if the oven is opened while operating. The same smoke alarm will sometimes go off if the toster is being used. It is a bit of a pain. The same smoke alarm went off when the electric floor heater came on for the first time in several months. That could have been heat sensitivity, or possibly there was dust on the heater element that burned off at first useage.

As far as the batteries go, replacing them annually is usually sufficient. Most smoke alarms will give out a little chirp, every few minutes, if the battery is getting low.

As far as yours going off, check for any heat or dust source near the alarm, or as in my case, if your heating just came on for the first time in some months, that could have triggered it.

If all else fails, replace the smoke alarm with a new one. They are dirt cheap now, and the extra measure of security is well worth the occasional annoyance.

Good Luck
Gerry

gerry, thanks for the advice, although i dont think any of it applies...


the smoke detectors are only a few months old

only 1 has a heat duct near it, but the we have had our heat on at night for about a week now

it was 3am, so no one was using the oven/toaster




i was worried that it was an electrical problem, but on 2 different forums no one has mentioned that, so i dont think that is going to be an issue.

i am going to go around and clean them all out and make sure there is no dust in any of them.

dcd22 10-17-2007 11:45 AM

I had the same issue. I am assuming these are interconnected? I had an addition done and needed to add smoke's and CO to each floor, bedroom and attic. In total, I added 7. From day one I had an issue with "false alarm's". THe manufacture (Firex??) said they were defective and sent me all new one's, same issue.

What I found out was it was all related to the batteries (after speaking to a friend with the same issue). So, now I just replace the batteries twice per year and all has been well.

JUST to be on the safe side though, I also installed an individual CO on each fllor and a battery powered smoke on the 1st floor just for "redundency".

Jim Port 10-17-2007 10:47 PM

What brand are these smoke detectors?

My supply house stopped selling one brand due to all the returns they were seeing come back.

I have an issue with one now that is only 5 mos. old and needs to be replaced for false alarms.

Gerry Kiernan 10-17-2007 11:02 PM

I wait, with baited breath, for the resonse. I am curious .

Gerry

arichard21 04-04-2008 10:34 AM

Hi everyone.

I just had another false alarm last night. They went off for about 30 seconds, and that was it.

Back in october when I first started having problems I determined that one was bad. After the 2nd false alarm, one of the bedroom smokes kept chirping/beeping, but not like it does when the bat is low or there is no AC power. It was a cross between it going off, and chirping. I replaced that smoke and replaced batteries in all, plus vaccumed them all out.

Last night it happened again.

At 3am.

Why 3am??!?!? Maybe the house is haunted. lol

Seriously though, any other thoughts on what could be happening? Could it be an electrical issue?

Nic 04-08-2008 11:06 AM

this is what i would do after months of alarms playing silly buggers. disconect all smoke allarms, seal cables and push back into celing. go and buy some battery opperated smoke alarms and install where the others were.

i know they wont be inter connected but the house is still protected. its down to you but that is what i would do once i ran out of patience at 3am. problem sorted.

CowboyAndy 04-08-2008 11:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nic (Post 114680)
this is what i would do after months of alarms playing silly buggers. disconect all smoke allarms, seal cables and push back into celing. go and buy some battery opperated smoke alarms and install where the others were.

i know they wont be inter connected but the house is still protected. its down to you but that is what i would do once i ran out of patience at 3am. problem sorted.

Well, that is really only putting a band aid on a gushing flesh wound.

Okay, maybe not THAT bad. But, if the smokes are required by code, then they HAVE to be there. The time and money should be invested into WHY they keep going off.

Hell, maybe the kids are sneeking into the bathroom for a midnight smoke... :whistling2:

47_47 04-08-2008 11:36 AM

My smoke alarms (Kidde) will chirp once when we lose power and they go to battery back up. If it were me, I would remove the red traveler wire from each smoke to isolate the defective unit, then reconnect them.


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