My Experience On Why It’s Important To Clean Your Fire Alarm!
I bet many of you are thinking…”Clean my Fire Alarm? Why?”. I know that a few days ago I would have thought the same thing. But, that was before I was rudely awakened by a very loud BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP. You see, a few nights ago my family and I had just cuddled into bed. I was just on the verge of that deep sleep when the fire alarm started going off. My husband and I quickly jumped out of bed and started to run down the hallway. I headed to my daughters room and was frantically screaming for my daughter to wake up. She slept right though the alarm which made the situation even more terrifying to me.
As I was yelling at my daughter my husband ran through the house in search of the fire. Just as he was coming back down the hallway from his investigation the alarms suddenly stopped. My husband and I looked around, smelled the air…where was the fire? As it turns out there was no fire. Nothing at all. That though however did not comfort my pounding heart as I started to wonder why they would have went off in the first place.
There were a million different questions running through my mind. But, let me back up a little….we have fire alarms in our home that are connected to each other. So when one alarm goes off the whole house goes off. Now…to go along with the alarms that are hard wired into our home we also have a security system that has a fire alarm…this alarm however did not go off. This was weird to me. I also know that the Carbon Monoxide detectors were not going off…so therefor it was not Carbon Monoxide. Weird right? That’s what I was thinking…
Anyway, after this incident I was having trouble calming my nervous. It really was mind boggling as to why they would have went off and very frighting. For those few minutes before I knew there was no fire I honestly thought that my whole life was going to change and not for the better. I knew that sleep would not come again so easily that night so I decided to do a little investigating into why this could have happened. Do you want to know what I learned? That it is important to vacuum your fire alarms so that things like this don’t happen! What? Vacuum your fire alarm? This was unheard of to me. I have a Father who retired as a Firefighter. Two of my brothers are currently active on fire departments. I am one of those people who really do change the batteries each and every time we change the clocks to leap forward or fall back. Every six months right on the dot….but I never, EVER heard of vacuuming your fire alarm.
That night I learned that fire alarms accumulate a lot of dust. This dust can coincidentally set off your alarm if it builds up around the opaque sensor. If anything passes over that sensor, on your alarm, like a cobweb or dust then poof….it goes off!
Of course there are also other reasons that your alarm can sound in the middle of the night without their being a fire. Other reasons include insects inside of the alarm or it can even be a sign that your alarm is getting old. Fire alarms expire after 10 years (even if it works when you push the test button it might not work in a real fire) so if you have had yours in your home longer then that you might want to think about investing in a new one..but if it is not that old..then please, please, please vacuum them out once in awhile, on low with your brush attachment on your vacuum. It really could save you from that rush of adrenalin as you think your home is burning down!