Smoke Detector Safety

All smoke detectors are not created equal.  Please watch this short 6 min video that could save you and your loved one's lives! Knowing the difference is extremely important.


Most people would think  having a working smoke detector would be good enough. There are different types of detectors that are better at detecting different kinds of fires.  Here is a really good in depth article that goes into the differences and some of the fact finding on the different type of alarms. Please click here

 Key Points 

  • Most homes (approx 90%) have ionization smoke detectors. Ionization smoke detectors are primarily for detecting fast moving flame type fires and not smoldering type fires.
  • Cooking/Fast flame moving fires account for 43% of fires, 39% of injuries and only 16% of deaths. 
  • Smoldering type fires account for 23% of fires, 30% of injuries and 61% of deaths   
  • 2/3 of deadly fires occur between 8pm and 8am and are of the smoldering type.  
  • Photelectric alarms are more sensitive to smoldering fires and detected smoldering type fires on avg 30+ min faster than ionization detectors. Sometimes the ionization detector didn't go off at all. 
  • Replacing your detectors with photoelectric alarms doubles your chance of surviving a more deadly type of smoldering smoky fire.  
  • Do not replace existing alarms with dual combo type units, as sensitivity of alarms can be manually altered by manufacturer to pass the bare minimum testing regulations. 
  • If you do not know what type you have, replace your detectors with photoelectric units to be safe.  

Home inspectors do not typically note the type of detectors used in a house during an inspection. Determining types and operability of detectors does exceed any standards of practice currently in place by home inspectors.