How to Test Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors


A smoke detector is one of the most essential devices every large building should have, yes, for the safety of people, it is very important that a building install smoke detectors. A smoke detector functions different from other safety devices, like the name itself suggests, a smoke detector is designed to detect the smoke in a room and then activate fire extinguisher services.

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As of today, most of the countries have written a law, which makes smoke detectors and fire extinguisher services mandatory in large buildings. There is one thing that most of the new people should understand; installing a smoke detector is not enough, the user will have to test the product at fixed intervals. Testing a smoke detector is very important as it ensures the detectors are working, however, it is very important that the testing is done in the right way.

Here is how to test the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors –

There are two types of smoke detector tests,

  1. Crisis testing
  2. General testing

Crisis testing is one of the most efficient and most rigorous types of testing that involves testing the detector using actual smoke material. However, it is very important that you do not perform crisis testing alone. You will need expert support while performing this test. The simplest way to perform this test is to light a candle or an incense stick and hold it 12-18-inches away from detectors.

Main crisis testing method –

  • Aerosol products are the best for crisis testing; however, it is very important that you spray it through the opening around the perimeter and not in the opening where the alarm speaker is mounted.
  • Always spray the aerosol from two feet away
  • The aerosol spray should not be used in excess on a detector. If you use too much aerosol, then it can destroy the sensitivity of the sensors inside the detectors.
  • If you prefer not to use aerosol spray for the testing, then we recommend that you simply light several matchsticks at once. The smoke from such ignition can help the user test the detectors.

General testing –

  • This type of testing is done to check if your detector can detect carbon monoxide
  • Unlike the crisis testing method, carbon monoxide testing or general testing does not require any special method.
  • Before the testing is done, you will have to inform the security and have to set the system in test mode.
  • To perform the general testing, the user will have to press and hold down the “Test” button until the detector produces the two-beep sound. Once the detector beeps, release the button. Now press the button again until you hear a four-beep sound, if you cannot get the four-beep sound then the detector is not functioning properly and if it beeps, your device is working fine.

Conclusion –

It is very important that you test your smoke and carbon monoxide detector at every fixed interval. However, you should be careful not to overdo it, for instance spraying a lot of aerosol can damage the detector and lighting matchsticks carelessly can cause accidents. So, follow the steps carefully as mentioned above.

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