Even schoolchildren know the importance of installing a fire alarm, but many adults are oblivious to the fact that a smoke detector is just as essential. The leading cause of mortality in house fires is caused by smoke inhalation, and not by the flames themselves, and a smoke detector can often detect a house fire sooner than a fire alarm. Photoelectric smoke detectors are the highest quality smoke detectors on the market, and they combine state of the art smoke detection with easy maintenance.
A photoelectric smoke detector senses byproducts of combustion in the detection chamber. It is much more sensitive to stimuli than regular smoke detectors, but, at the same time, a photoelectric smoke detector has sophisticated wiring that prevents annoying false alarms around fireplaces and kitchens. These models have dual or fixed rate detection levels that can detect an actual fire quickly. Other features include a test button, an audible low battery signal and an LED power indicator.
Smoke Detectors vs. Fire Alarms
A photoelectric smoke detector can be purchased separately from a fire alarm, or the two can be combined into one unit. If you are already happy with your fire alarm, the best option is simply to purchase a photoelectric smoke detector. However, most fire alarms need to be replaced every few years, so if you have been hanging on to the same fire alarm for years, it is worth it to invest in a unit that contains both a fire alarm and a photoelectric smoke detector.
Make sure that the batteries of your photoelectric smoke detector and your fire alarm are changed on a regular basis. Maintenance for a smoke detector is easy, and requires that, in addition to the batteries, that the optical chamber be changed periodically. It helps to test your photoelectric smoke detector once in awhile to ensure that it is in good working condition, and of course, to schedule fire drills with your family at least once every season.
Most photoelectric smoke detectors come with a warrantee or a money back guarantee. Your company should be happy to replace any smoke detector that is defective or to give you credit towards purchasing a new one. If you are happy with a certain brand of fire alarm, you will probably be able to find a good quality photoelectric smoke detector produced by the same company.