Security & Fire Protection Systems/smoke detector

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Question
I have a basic home smoke detector, probably from Home Depot or Lowe's.  I see no name or brand on it, except the numbers 430 189.  3 days ago, it let off a loud alarm for about 3-7 seconds (not a chirpling sounds).  Turned itself off, yesterday it did it again.  I checked the battery some one wrote on it that it should be replaced by Dec 2017.  Any ideas how I can fix this.  Thank you for your assistance.  All comments are appreciated.

Gae

Answer
Hello Gae, and thanks for your question.

It's likely a false alarm caused by a dirty detector; they become overly sensitive when dirt builds up over time.

Here's what to do: remove the detector from the mounting bracket (usually 1/2 turn to the left). Clean the interior of your alarm (the sensing chamber) by using compressed air or a vacuum cleaner hose and blowing or vacuuming through the openings around the perimeter of the alarm. You can get a can of compressed air at any office supply store.

After cleaning, reinstall your alarm, and verify that it works by pressing the TEST button.

If you continue to have false alarms, you should replace the detector. Also, there should be a date of manufacture on the bottom of the detector. If it's near or beyond ten years old, you should replace it.

Best Regards,

Dave

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Dave Neuweiler

Expertise

The design and application of burglary and fire systems for homes and businesses. Helping alarm owners understand how their system works. Helping to troubleshoot false alarm problems. Questions about monitoring issues.

Experience

Over a quarter century in the industry. Experience in installation, service, and monitoring centers. Training manager for a national protective services company; director of education and training for a national trade organization for for alarm dealers.

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