The smoke alarm is desensitized by pushing the Test/Hush button on the smoke alarm cover. If the smoke is not too dense, the alarm will silence immediately and the red LED blinks every 10 seconds. This indicates that the alarm is in a temporarily desensitized condition.
All smoke Alarms also have a red light that flashes momentarily every 40-60 seconds to visually indicate they are operating. This same red light flashes continuously when the Smoke Alarm has been activated.
If your detector or alarm has a blinking or steady light with no audible alarm sound, this typically indicates that the unit is receiving power.
What is this? Most smoke detectors use a red blinking LED light to alert users to an active alarm. In this case, the red LED light will flash once for every 45 seconds that the alarm is active. This is usually a common thing across smoke detector brands, regardless of the manufacturer.
If the smoke is not too dense, the alarm will silence immediately. The red LED will illuminate for 1.5 seconds every 8 seconds while in hush. This indicates that the alarm is in a temporarily desensitized condition.
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. It Needs to Be Replaced: Smoke detectors don't last forever.
If your alarms use regular batteries, swap in fresh batteries at least once a year. A “chirping” sound means that it's time to change batteries. Because alarm sensors wear out, replace each alarm at least every 10 years. Also, alarms have labels showing when they were made.
For battery-only detectors, you will need to remove the detector's batteries, then hold the reset button down for 15-20 seconds. Replace the batteries and reconnect the detector. It will probably beep one time to show that it is connected, but it should not continue to beep after that.
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.
Therefore, the red LED will blink during a smoke alarm, a low battery mode chirp, a unit error mode chirp or at end of unit life.
This battery characteristic can cause a smoke alarm to enter the low battery chirp mode when air temperatures drop. Most homes are the coolest between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. That's why the alarm may sound a low-battery chirp in the middle of the night, and then stop when the home warms up a few degrees.
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.
The CO alarm will sound if your sensor detects a high buildup of carbon monoxide in your home. Most people begin to feel the effects of carbon monoxide at 50 ppm, so be sure your detector can sense an amount of 50 ppm or less.
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.
"Replace all smoke alarms, including those that use ten-year batteries and hard-wired alarms, when they are ten years old or sooner if they don't respond properly when tested." Each smoke detector should be replaced 10 years after the date of installation.
Place the battery in the smoke detector, reconnect the power cable and put the smoke detector back on its mounting bracket. Turn the breaker on. The detector will chirp one time to indicate power was restored to the unit.
Testing and Changing Your Fire Alarm Battery
If your smoke alarms are powered by a nine-volt battery, the battery should be replaced every 6 months, while the alarm itself should be replaced once every 10 years. For 10-year lithium-powered fire detectors, you won't need to replace the battery.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends changing the batteries in your smoke detectors every 6 months. At First Alert, we offer 10-year smoke alarms that have a built-in 10-year battery, which eliminates the need for battery replacements for the life of the detectors.
Here's a simple guide: Smoke alarms alert you with three beeps in a row. Carbon monoxide alarms alert you with four beeps. A single chirp means the battery is low or the detector should be replaced.
A carbon monoxide detector is a must for any home and just as important as a smoke detector. CO detectors should be placed near all bedrooms; they're the only way you will know if carbon monoxide is affecting the air quality in your home, and can help prevent serious illness and even death.
While smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are a critical part of protecting your home and family, they will not detect a natural gas leak; you'll need a natural gas detector for that. However, carbon monoxide detectors can alert you when your appliances improperly burn natural gas.