When it comes to a fire, you won’t have much time to react if you don’t have a properly working fire alarm. Fires can injure and kill because of smoke inhalation and burns. So, the earlier you know a fire is starting, the safer that you’ll be.

If you want to respond early to a fire, you’ll need a properly functioning smoke alarm. However, many Americans don’t know how often they should change their smoke alarm. In fact, many Americans don’t even know how old their oldest smoke alarm is.


  • At least half of Americans own a minimum of three smoke alarms in their home
  • Almost 20% of all Americans say their oldest smoke alarm is over 10 years old
  • Almost another 20% of Americans say they don’t know how old their oldest smoke alarm is
  • Nearly 90% of Americans don’t know how often to replace their smoke alarms

Ten Year Commitment

The rule that everyone should follow is to replace their smoke alarm every ten years. The reason is pretty easy to understand. As the years rolls on, dust starts to collect inside the smoke detector. Those detectors have sensors to pick up on smoke, but the sensors wear out and get desensitized as dust collects on them. In terms of time, it’s important to change the alarm if ten years have passed, otherwise your alarm may not be able to detect any smoke in an emergency situation.

Is It Beeping?

Although you should always consider replacing your smoke alarm every ten years, there is one occasion where you should change your alarm even earlier. If your smoke detector starts to chirp even after you’ve switched out the batteries, it’s an early sign that something’s wrong. It’s better to replace the alarm entirely instead of waiting to find out if it will perform in an emergency situation.

Does It Go Off?

Did you know that you’re supposed to check your alarm every month? If not, now you know. It’s important to do a monthly check to make sure your fire alarms will actually sound off when triggered. If your alarm doesn’t go off during your monthly check, then you’ll want to switch out your unit even earlier than normal.

How Much Does It Cost?

A basic smoke alarm system doesn’t cost much to install. Not only are the units affordable, but installation is also well within the budgets of most people. Different types of alarm systems cost different amounts, but you’ll always find a unit that fits your budget. Don’t let money keep you from protecting your home against the risk of fires. Don’t let your home stay unprotected from fire threats.

Three out of five home fire deaths result from fires in properties without working smoke alarms.

Are you unsure about how old your fire alarm? Ready to protect yourself against fire hazards? Call Protect America to get a free quote and learn more about how to secure your home with a new smoke alarm system.