House fires are a risk to every home, but working smoke detectors can protect you and your family. You may be wondering if your home has enough smoke detectors or if you are checking them as often as you should. Here are 3 questions to ask about smoke detector placement to make sure your home is safe.

How Many Smoke Detectors Should I Have?

There is no set amount of smoke detectors that a house should have because it depends on the home’s size and layout. The first rule of thumb is that there should be at least one detector on every floor of the house. Most floors will need more than one, but the basement and attic will probably only need one. There should be a smoke detector installed inside and outside of each bedroom. Also, install one near any heat-producing appliance, like the furnace, stove, and clothes dryer. Keep in mind that smoke detectors that are too close to cooking appliances can cause false alarms.

How Can I Tell if My Smoke Detectors Work?

According to the National Fire Protection Association, it’s smart to test your smoke detectors once per month. Go around the home and press the test buttons on the devices, making sure they sound. Get into the habit of doing this on the first of every month. Change the batteries at daylight savings time, twice per year.

Where is the Best Smoke Detector Placement?

Smoke detectors should be installed overhead. The ideal smoke detector placement is on the ceiling, but if this isn’t possible, they can be installed on the wall no more than 12 inches from the ceiling. If you have a pitched ceiling, the smoke alarm should be 12 inches below the highest point of the ceiling. Don’t install them near an air vent or ceiling fan, because the moving air will make it harder for the devices to detect smoke.

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