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Old 01-30-2012, 10:03 PM
 
Location: Gilbert, AZ
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It seems that all modern hardwired smoke alarms have a solid green LED to indicate it is recieving AC power, while a red LED flashes every once in a while to indicate it is working.

However, it seems that many older models had a solid red LED on them. I remember that in Virginia, while the alarms at our house had solid green LEDs to indicate AC power with the red LED flashing once in a while, our neighbor had alarms with solid red LEDs.

I was wondering, what do the solid red LED models do visually to indicate operation? I don't know if anyone here still has any that are working, however, I would like to know.

Also, what year were green LEDs mandated on hardwired alarms?
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Old 01-30-2012, 10:05 PM
 
Location: United State of Texas
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Most smoke alarms work for a very long time. A simply monthly test will tell you if they are still functioning. All will beep when their backup battery dies.
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Old 01-30-2012, 10:11 PM
 
Location: Gilbert, AZ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zembonez View Post
Most smoke alarms work for a very long time. A simply monthly test will tell you if they are still functioning. All will beep when their backup battery dies.
At our old house in New Mexico, we replaced our old Dicon ionization units with First Alert/BRK photoelectric units.

Our current house came with Kidde/FireX ionization units, but we upgraded one of them (the one in the main hallway) with a dual-sensor model to provide better protection against slow smoldering fires.
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Old 01-30-2012, 11:02 PM
 
Location: The Middle
5,262 posts, read 8,247,028 times
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Interesting. We have a hardwired smoke alarm in our family room. It flashes red. I have never seen it green. I wonder if it works because it is located close to the kitchen and I have smoked out the kitchen a few times and it has never gone off. In fact, the one in the upstairs hallway goes off instead.
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Old 01-31-2012, 04:13 AM
 
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we have also smoke alarm but i think that doesn't work. I have smoke a lot of time near it but it always remains calm.
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Old 01-31-2012, 11:02 AM
 
Location: West Michigan
12,134 posts, read 22,273,218 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zembonez View Post
Most smoke alarms work for a very long time. A simply monthly test will tell you if they are still functioning. All will beep when their backup battery dies.
Just remember that simply pushing the button until the detector goes off is NOT testing the sensor, it is simply testing the annunciation circuit (the alarm part). To properly test the sensors, you need to introduce smoke (or synthetic smoke) to the sensor. There are a few makers of "smoke in a can" for lack of a better way to describe it, that you can spray like an aerosol can and it will test the sensor. Just make sure you get the type that is approved for the smoke detectors you have installed. Or light a small piece of paper, blow it out, then let the smoke drift into the detector. Safest way of course being the can of pressurized smoke.

GE makes one called "Smoke in a can"
CRC makes one called "Smoke Test"
There is also one called "Smoke Check or 25s" which I believe is made by HSI Fire & Safety Group

I have used all of these and they all work very well. Check to see which ones are approved for your brand of detector. Plus this is the recommended test from the National Fire Protection Agency in their NFPA 72 code article.
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Old 01-31-2012, 11:37 AM
 
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Not all smoke detrectors operate the exact same as to those lights. On my smokes designed to work on a the alarm system, the red led means that the smoke has tripped (and was not reset) or that it is not being supervised. On my regular code required a/c smokes, the red led means some trouble with the smoke. On those because they are so cheap, I just replace them and not try to figure out if its dirty, bad connection, or whatever.

Also, cjheck the smokes as many will have a date code and the manufacture will list on their website when the smoke detectors lifespan has been reached based on that daye code.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bydand View Post
Just remember that simply pushing the button until the detector goes off is NOT testing the sensor, it is simply testing the annunciation circuit (the alarm part).
Good point.
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Old 01-31-2012, 01:32 PM
 
Location: Gilbert, AZ
1,982 posts, read 2,794,979 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bydand View Post
Just remember that simply pushing the button until the detector goes off is NOT testing the sensor, it is simply testing the annunciation circuit (the alarm part). To properly test the sensors, you need to introduce smoke (or synthetic smoke) to the sensor. There are a few makers of "smoke in a can" for lack of a better way to describe it, that you can spray like an aerosol can and it will test the sensor. Just make sure you get the type that is approved for the smoke detectors you have installed. Or light a small piece of paper, blow it out, then let the smoke drift into the detector. Safest way of course being the can of pressurized smoke.

GE makes one called "Smoke in a can"
CRC makes one called "Smoke Test"
There is also one called "Smoke Check or 25s" which I believe is made by HSI Fire & Safety Group

I have used all of these and they all work very well. Check to see which ones are approved for your brand of detector. Plus this is the recommended test from the National Fire Protection Agency in their NFPA 72 code article.
I have read that using an open flame to test a smoke detector can shorten the detector's life. I don't know if that smoke in a can would be any less harmful to the smoke detector.
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:46 AM
 
23 posts, read 34,648 times
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I am sorry to say that I think I have stated this before in the aquarium test the smoke alarm of choice is the photo electric it says in the smoke alarm directions if you misuse the smoke spray it could effect sentivity Plus there is a whole article filled with stuff know one wants to hear about why the smoke spray is a bad Idea it is an aerosol and the problem is that aerosols do not simulate visible smoke which is what is easily detected by a photo electric alarms as seen in the aquarium test so using the phony smoke testor on the phony smoke alarm sound like a bad Idea please feel free to email me for more info at buffy_jem@hotmail .com I think I have a copy of an article that is explains with possible government conspiracies why the smoke spray is frauduent
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:57 AM
 
1,256 posts, read 1,295,403 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bydand View Post
To properly test the sensors, you need to introduce smoke (or synthetic smoke) to the sensor.
We have the "older" solid-red-LED detectors in our house - the one JUST outside the kitchen area regularly ... ahem ... gets tested when we stir-fry just about anything (in fact now that I think about it, just last week we deep-fried some french fries and THAT set off the detector)

There is no apparent change in the detectors' lights as far as I've ever noticed in the 20+ years living here - they just glow red inside their cases (the LEDs are only visible from directly beneath each detector).
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