Low batteries are the most common reason smoke detectors beep or send a trouble signal to your security panel, when there is no smoke or fire. As the battery weakens, the device will beep regularly to let you know it's time to replace it.
Newer smoke alarms keep some errors in the processor. The smoke alarm must clear errors after the battery is changed, but it might continue to chirp even after you change the batteries. This usually occurs in electrical powered smoke alarms with a battery backup.
But most smoke detectors are instead designed to go off when their electrical current goes down. That's because smoke in the air will reduce the current. If your battery is dying, the current that's flowing through your sensor also goes down. And so you can get a false positive.
Dust, Dirt and Environmental Smoke
Dust and dirt that comes from activities like remodeling may set off your smoke alarms. To clean your smoke alarm, open it up carefully, and look inside for dust or dirt. Use a vacuum attachment or electronic aerosol cleaner to remove dust particles.
While dirt and bugs aren't pleasant, they are pretty simple to remove from your home's smoke detector. The fact is, the movement of a small pest or the presence of dust can be enough to set off the fire alarm. Dust often reflects the light particles, similar to what smoke does, which can cause a false alarm.
Your alarm manufacturer may have included a blinking red light to let you know it's time to test the alarm again. The Batteries are Low: Usually accompanied by a loud beep, a blinking red light could mean the batteries in the unit are low. Consider adding fresh batteries and running a test to make sure it's working.
A solid green light on your smoke detector indicates that the device is on and operating normally.
The green light on my smoke alarm has gone out, what does this mean? The AC power has been interrupted. Check the circuit breaker and AC wiring to correct the problem.
You can stop the constant chirping by simply resetting the breaker. Tripped breakers cause your smoke alarm to sense a power outage, and emit a continuous sound until you reset the breaker. This can take up to 10 seconds, causing your smoke detector to sound like it's malfunctioning.
A smoke alarm that needs attention will chirp for a long time, sometimes indefinitely, if it is hardwired to your electricity. But you'll want to make sure you take action ASAP once you hear that sound because it means the batteries in the smoke detector are going bad and need to be replaced.
Types of Smoke Detectors. Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are essential safety equipment for your home. Smoke alarms sound an alarm when they sense the presence of smoke particles in the air, while carbon monoxide detectors sound an alarm when toxic levels of the invisible and odorless gas are detected.
Press and hold the test button on the smoke detector. It can take a few seconds to begin, but a loud, ear-piercing siren should emanate from the smoke detector while the button is pressed. If the sound is weak or nonexistent, replace your batteries.
Remove the smoke alarm from the mounting bracket and disconnect the power. Remove the battery (for a sealed-battery model, see Battery Settings for a 10-Year Alarm to learn more). Press and hold the test button for five seconds. Reconnect the power and reinstall the battery.
Battery smoke detectors run solely on batteries. Hardwired smoke detectors run on electricity, but they also have a backup battery for power outages. When you hear a hard-wired smoke detector beeping, it means you need to replace its battery.
It also reinforces the advice to replace alarms every 10 years. Once a 10-year battery fails, the whole device needs to be replaced. When detectors are about that old or older, replace them all at the same time.
You'll likely notice a high-pitched chirping noise coming from your smoke alarm when it is time for the batteries to be changed. It is best to be proactive and change the batteries in your smoke detectors before that noise occurs.
What does it mean? This is the power indicator light: First Alert and BRK alarms have a power indicator light to show you that your alarm is receiving power. Some alarms have a red or green light that blinks every few minutes, while other models blink rapidly or shine a solid light.
For most residential smoke detectors, blinks are common; you need to be conversant with the colors showing. Different smoke alarms use the green and red LED to indicate the device's power status such that a flashing green means low battery while a constant blink means AC power is connected.
BLUE/CO: Blue light flashes rapidly when sensor detects elevated CO levels.
The colors are green, yellow and red. These colors signify the urgency of the situation. Green is normal, yellow means to have caution, and red means to be alert and in a state of emergency. The LED will flash along with the alarm sound.
Typically, a smoke alarm has a red and green light to allow you to understand the system is working properly. However, there are other models that will integrate a third light indicator to separate when a malfunction, power source, and a simple battery replacement might be needed.