The end of daylight savings time should remind you that it’s a perfect time to change your batteries! (Daylight saving time ends at 2 AM MDT Sunday, 11/4/18.) Don’t forget to turn your clocks backward 1 hour.
BUT ALSO REMEMBER – Twice a year when the time changes, change your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector batteries.
New Mexico State University Fire Department wants to remind you that it is important to check your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors every month to ensure they are in working condition. However, if you do not have smoke alarms or carbon monoxide detectors in your home off campus, we strongly advise you to go pick up a few from your local home improvement store.
Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are installed in all facilities on campus including family housing. They are simple detectors that are composed of two main parts (sensor/audible alarm) which allow the detector to notify the occupant that there is a hazardous smoke or carbon monoxide filled atmosphere. The sensor picks up tiny smoke particles in the air which then triggers the audible alarm which consists of loud beeping noises. Newer alarms now come with standard 10-year lithium battery, but many older alarms are still in use today. These alarms normally operate off of 9 volt or AA batteries which are easily installed into the back of the alarm. Alarms normally come with instructions on the back of the detector which tells you how it operates and what the different audible alarms mean. There is also a test button on the alarm which notifies you if the detector is functioning properly. Stop by the NMSU Fire Department to receive more information on fire safety and pick up a complimentary 9-volt battery for your alarm.
Who does this effect? These alarms are installed for your well-being and to notify you of a smoke or carbon monoxide filled atmosphere.
What is smoke? The visible vapor and gases given off by a burning or smoldering substance, especially the gray, brown, or blackish mixture of gases and suspended carbon particles resulting from the combustion of wood, peat, coal, or other organic matter.
What is carbon monoxide? It is a colorless, odorless, poisonous gas and byproduct of incomplete combustion.
Where are my detectors located? Normal locations for alarms are usually high on side walls or on ceilings. Smoke travels upwards first due to heat, detectors need to be in high areas for early detection.
When do I check my detectors? Alarms should be checked on a monthly basis to make sure they are functioning properly using the test button on the side or face of the detector. A common case of detector malfunction is the batteries being dead and need to be replaced.
Why do I need smoke detectors? Smoke alarms notify the occupant of a hazardous smoke filled atmosphere. This can prevent the occupant from harm and let people know to get to a safe environment.
Should I also have a carbon monoxide detector? Carbon monoxide detectors are highly recommended. They offer warning to unburned gases that may otherwise be undetected until it is too late.
Note: Always notify the fire department in case of emergency by calling 9-1-1 and when your smoke detector is activated.
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