Write Down the Install Date
Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. Most manufacturers list the date a smoke alarm was made on the back. That's helpful information if you remember to look for it. Give yourself a proper reminder, and write the date you installed the alarm in big, bold letters on the base plate so you'll notice it every time you change the batteries.
Three things you need to do:
- Check smoke alarms once a month.
- Change batteries once a year.
- Replace alarms every 10 years.
Protect Smoke Alarms from Dust
Excessive dust and paint overspray can wreak havoc with a smoke alarm's sensors. Before starting that messy remodeling project, temporarily cover or remove any alarm in harm's way. And if you are painting the ceiling, don't paint over the alarm—that will probably destroy it. Make cleaning your smoke detector part of your post-project cleanup routine.