There are over 3,000 preventable house fires each year in Victoria alone. Smoke alarms provide an essential early warning and time to evacuate safely – but only if they work!
As you wind back your clocks on Sunday 3 April 2016, be sure to change your smoke alarm batteries too! Victorian Fire Services recommend long-lasting alkaline batteries for smoke alarms.
Some quick tips to keep your smoke alarm in working order are:
- Test smoke alarms once a month. The alarm should produce a loud “beep beep beep beep” sound when you press the test button using a broom handle.
- Use the brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to dust the smoke alarm every six months.
- Smoke alarms have a ten year life span. Replace all smoke alarms – both battery powered and hard wired – every ten years.
- Purchase smoke alarms that meet Australian Standards. Look for the AS3786 marking.
- Help your elderly family, friends and neighbours to make sure their smoke alarm is working.
Waiting until the smoke alarm beeps before you change the battery is too late – this indicates that the batteries are already flat and your family is not protected.