Winter is a prime season for house fires. It is important to install quality smoke detectors inside your home, and even more important to test them periodically so that you know they are still doing their job. If you are on the market for new smoke detectors, you will soon discover there are hundreds of products to choose from. The two most common smoke detectors are ionization smoke alarms and photoelectric smoke alarms. Continue reading to learn more about each type of smoke detector and how to choose the right one for your home.
Modern Day Smoke Alarm Technologies
When you begin your search for smoke detector alarms, you will notice that the majority of available devices are either ionization smoke detector alarms or photoelectric smoke alarms. Both are widely-accepted systems for detecting smoke and fire, however, they are also difference in significant ways, which could sway your decision one way or another. The most significant difference between the two systems is the type of fire they detect. Below are some examples.
◔ Ionization Smoke Alarms – These devices are designed with a small amount of radioactive material placed between two electrically-charged plates. In turn, this ionizes the space between the two plates, thus causing an electrical current to flow between them. The device is alerted of a fire when smoke passes into its inner chambers, causing an interruption of ion flow. This reduced ion flow sets the alarm off.
◔ Photoelectric Smoke Alarms – In contrast to ionization devices, photoelectric alarms are designed to use light and sensory technology to detect house fires. A sensor inside the device is pointed at an inner light module. As smoke enters the chamber of the device, the inner light is interrupted and scattered, which sets off the alarm.
Research and testing suggests that ionization alarms are faster at detecting smoke produced by fire flames, while photoelectric alarms are better at detecting smoldering fires, such as unattended cigarettes or a burning roast in the oven. Although most homes in the United States have ionization smoke detector systems, the U.S. Fire Administration recommends having BOTH systems installed for maximum safety and protection. You can find these devices online, or at any local home improvement store.
House Fire Injuries and Claims
If you or a loved one were injured as a result of a house fire, whether from a defective smoke alarm or someone else’s negligence, it is vital that you speak to a licensed personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. You could be entitled to certain compensation to cover your damages and losses, including medical expenses, hospital bills, lost wages at work, pain, suffering, and more.