Statistics show that you have a 50% greater chance of escaping a fire in your home by having at least one operating smoke alarm. Here are some tips on how to use smoke alarms.
Your home should have smoke alarms on every level (even the basement). It's especially important to have them outside of each sleeping area.
If you sleep with the door closed, have grown-ups consider having interconnected alarms installed. These alarms (installed by a qualified electrician) are connected so that if one sounds, they all sound.
Smoke Alarms should be mounted high on walls or ceilings. Remember: smoke rises.
Check to make sure the batteries in the smoke alarms work. Have a grown-up test them once a month. Batteries should be replaced AT LEAST once a year, or when you hear the alarm "chirp", that means that the battery is low. A good rule to follow is: "Change your Clock, Change your Battery"
How old is that alarm anyway? Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. And if no one can remember how old it is, it's probably time to replace it.
Consider installing a 10 Year Lithium Battery Smoke Detector.
Never "borrow" a battery from a smoke alarm.
Never paint or decorate a smoke alarm (even with stickers!) because this could keep it from working properly.
Make sure that everyone in your home knows the sound of the smoke alarm, and knows exactly what to do if the alarm goes off. Have a grown-up sound the alarm at night to make sure that everyone wakes up. If they don't, talking" Smoke Alarms are now available to help alert "sound sleepers" in the event of a fire.
When the alarm sounds, get out. Always assume that when the smoke alarm sounds there is an actual fire and follow your escape plan.
Some Items Reproduced from NFPA's Fire Prevention Week Web site, www.firepreventionweek.org. B)2004 NFPA