Troubleshooting a Smoke Detector

Smoke detectors are a common part of our home safety system. However, if they are not working properly your family can be put at risk. This is a guide about troubleshooting a smoke detector.
Ad

Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

1 found this helpful
September 22, 2016 Flag

My smoke detectors (hardwired) have decided to start chirping (the sound when battery is low) at around 1:45 am every night. Then they go into full alarm mode. I have figured out which one of the 4 is the 'master' one so I can push the reset button to stop the alarm. However, it goes through the same cycle repeatedly. I've had to shut the circuit breaker and remove the batteries.

Ad

I have changed the batteries -- same thing happens. I have replaced all 4 of the smoke detectors w/new batteries -- and same thing happening. Always around 1:45 am.

Any ideas as to what to do next? I don't want to leave my condo unprotected. Nor have all the outlets connected with that circuit breaker not working in my home either.

Thanks!

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
February 1, 20170 found this helpful

The fact they're going off at 1:45 may have less to do with the time and more to do with the fact that they are for some reason periodically malfunctioning after a 24 hour stretch.

I am not sure anything can be done but to replace them. THis is clearly some sort of odd malfunction

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
February 3, 20170 found this helpful

Smoke alarms have a lifespan. Ours started doing that and we had to replace them with new ones.

Ad
ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
February 4, 20170 found this helpful

We have the same problem. Thankfully not in middle of night, but same time in evening. Did u find a solution?

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

1 found this helpful
July 15, 2016 Flag

Today in the morning I had my alarms go off around 7 am. I woke up checked, but didn't see any fire. I live in townhouse that has 3 floors and it worked on every floor for about 3-5 min and stopped. What should I do?

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
January 4, 20170 found this helpful

Dust plays havoc with smoke detectors just blow them out with a compressor

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
March 1, 2016 Flag

I heard a beeping that I thought was from my smoke detector. I unplugged it, removed the battery, and moved it to another room. The beeping is still coming from the ceiling where the smoke detector was plugged in before. There is nothing there but wires and a housing. There is no attic above - just another floor with a smoke detector that is not beeping. How can I diagnose this and stop it without tearing out the ceiling? Anyone have this issue?

Related Content(article continues below)
AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
March 4, 20160 found this helpful

Another device must be making the noise. Make sure other detectors (smoke, CO) are in good working order. Sometimes it is hard to determine where the sound comes from.

If the ceiling is new, it is possible that someone covered a detector and the battery has now died but I think that would be unusual.

I wish I could be more help. Good Luck.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
October 10, 20160 found this helpful

I have this same problem. I took the doctor off and the beeping comes from the ceiling. What is the problem? I am going nuts!!!!

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
October 10, 20160 found this helpful

It is coming from the same place I removed the unit. I took off all the others in that area and checked them out first.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Read More Answers

0 found this helpful
May 30, 2015 Flag

I have a chirping coming from random smoke detectors. They are hard wired with batteries. I have changed all batteries and reset all of them. They are only a year old. Why do they still chirp? It's not always the same one, e.g. my son's room will chirp for an hour, then my daughter's room, then my room, then the hall, but never at the same time. I just built this house a year ago so it's not old or dusty. I am very clean so I'm confused on what it could be. Please help, my kids and I cannot sleep at night.

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
May 31, 20150 found this helpful

My husband said that when the battery-operated ones chirp like that and wont stop after replacing batteries it means they need to be replaced. He doesn't know about the hard-wired ones.

Have you contacted the manufacturer about this problem? That's where I'd start, and soon! They should be able to give you some help or get you started in the right direction.

If their product doesn't last longer than a year, or if they wont stand behind their product, then perhaps you should invest in better smoke detectors.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
June 8, 20150 found this helpful

My smoke detectors have a reset button!

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
June 23, 20150 found this helpful

Have you looked inside for spiders?

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Read More Answers

0 found this helpful
February 4, 2015 Flag

My smoke detector (2 years old) goes off on about an 8hr interval. I changed the batteries 3 times (2 different brand batteries) and it still keeps beeping. The alarm goes off about every 8 hrs, so I open the battery cover, take the battery out, put the battery back in, twist smoke detector to on and off a few times and I leave it be as soon as it stops. Then, 8 hrs later it starts again. Anyone know what the issue may be? Thank you.

By Alex

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
February 5, 20150 found this helpful

Could be many reasons why your smoke detector is not working correctly. Probably the best you can do to relieve your frustration and improve your safety is to buy a new smoke detector ASAP.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Anonymous Flag
May 6, 20160 found this helpful

Made in china

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
January 4, 20170 found this helpful

Take an air compressor and blow into it . The dust sets off false alarms . Mine used to do that but no more after blowing them out .

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Read More Answers

0 found this helpful
March 22, 2015 Flag

My smoke detector works, but not properly because of dust. Please suggest some solutions to me.

By shaheenahmed01722

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
March 23, 20150 found this helpful

use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
March 12, 2015 Flag

I have an electrical smoke alarm with back up battery. How do I stop it from beeping? I have already replaced the battery. It still kept on beeping. Then I removed the battery and it is still beeping.

By Pam B.

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
March 13, 20150 found this helpful

Vacuum out the inside of the detector with a brush attachment, dust and cobwebs can make it beep. It's important also to note that smoke detectors do wear out. How old is yours?

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
August 6, 2007 Flag

Our house is 4 1/2 years old. Built new.We have 8 smoke detectors in the house electrically powered. Also we have in house security system, where in the panel lights "Fire" button. When I turn the system on, it starts beeping very loudly, continuously until I manually turn the system off by key given.

We had a same problem about 1 1/2 years ago. I call Hart Alarm Systems, original installer ,who tested all smoke detectors, replaced one at the basement level, everything worked fine since until the same problem now.

Do you think it is again smoke detector problem ? How do you test detectors? Where would I find test button? Do flashing lights mean the detector is working and considered good? Does an electric smoke detector carry also back up battery and where would it be installed? As I open the cover, only thing I see is few wires from the ceiling to the detector cover. Please advise ASAP. Thanks.

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
August 7, 20070 found this helpful

Impossible to tell from far away, not sensible to mess with electrical and security systems without a professional or knowlegeable person physically present. Can't blame you for wondering if there would be advice out there, but someone actually there would be best.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Flag
August 7, 20070 found this helpful

Does your smoke detectors have a backup battery? I have electric smoke detectors and if the backup battery needs to be replaced it beeps.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Flag
August 7, 20070 found this helpful

Most states require that the smoke detectors now be tied together so that it one goes off they all go off. It is quite possible that you have one or more defective smoke detectors. These things do fail. If you are not familiar with the wiring or electrical circuits I would recommend that you get a qualified electrician to check it out.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Read More Answers

0 found this helpful
October 3, 2010 Flag

After small fire in my house (dishwasher caught on fire) my hard wired smoke detector (no battery in this head) has the permanent red light on. I have 4 electronic smoke detectors with battery backup on the same line. There is no beeping, just a red light on. Is this normal?

By Paul from IL

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
October 3, 20100 found this helpful

All the hard wired smoke detectors in our apartment have a red light that stays on all the time.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Anonymous Flag
October 4, 20100 found this helpful

Just to be sure I would call the fire department and/or an electrician to ask to be safe rather than sorry.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
July 8, 2010 Flag

I am having difficulty in putting smoke detectors back into position after replacing the batteries.

By iolite from Boynton Beach, FL

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
July 10, 20100 found this helpful

Did it originally pull off or twist off? Check to see that nothing broke.I had that problem and just bought a new one. They're not that expensive.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
July 10, 20100 found this helpful

Did it originally pull off or twist off? Check to see that nothing broke.I had that problem and just bought a new one. They're not that expensive.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
August 17, 2011 Flag

Our only smoke detector is hard-wired into the ceiling. We have had 2 different smoke/CO detectors with battery backup. When a new battery is placed, it is fine for a few hours and then dies, causing the detector to chirp.

Is the electrical wiring somehow drawing power from the battery? Two completely different detectors have done the same thing, so I don't think it is a defective detector. I think there used to be another detector in the basement. I don't know if it was hard-wired or not, but we replaced it with a plug-in type. Any information would be great!

By Sarah

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
November 5, 20110 found this helpful

Its probably wiring. Make sure the hot and the neutral wire are not swapped or on the battery wiring check for bare spot that might be going to ground or grounding.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
February 28, 2015 Flag

I have realized that if one battery in the set of 4 electric detectors is not functional the whole system goes off. This happened last night at 3:30 in the morning. It's really awful to try and change these when the alarm is screaming in your ear. How can I tell which one is the faulty one? I also would like to know how to turn them all off so I can at least change them in peace. The main electrical box does not list them, so I've not idea which breaker to flip off.

By Margaret

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
February 3, 2015 Flag

My wired in smoke alarm does not beep when I press it to test it. There is a green light on it that I can see when it is dark. Does this mean it is working OK?

By Peggy A.

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
November 21, 2014 Flag

The smoke alarm goes off when the central air is on, if you close all windows it will not go off. But if you open any window an inch the alarm goes off. It's a new house, no appliances in yet, no one living there yet. It will not go off at all during heat cycle. It is not near vents or lights. It is located in the Los Angeles area. It is hard wired in, a Kidde combo smoke/CO2 alarm, model kn-cosm1b.

By Gabe from Los Angeles, CA

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
July 28, 2014 Flag

I have five hardwired smoke detectors with battery backup. I changed the batteries today, four of them show a green light and one has a flashing red light; it's not beeping.

By Dean F.

AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Categories
Home and Garden Repair Home MiscellaneousJuly 30, 2014
Guides
Cleaning Smoke Stains from Walls
Cleaning Smoke Off Walls
Cigarette Left Burning in Ashtray
Removing Cigarette Smoke Odor from Leather
cigarette smell computer
Removing Cigarette Smoke Odors from a Computer
Electric Smoke Detector
Electric Smoke Detector Won't Stop Beeping
More
🐰
Easter Ideas!
🍀
St. Patrick's Ideas!
Facebook
Pinterest
YouTube
Contests!
Newsletters
Ask a Question
Share a Post
Categories
© 1997-2017 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Published by . Page generated on February 17, 2017 at 1:44:37 PM on 10.0.1.230 in 3 seconds. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of ThriftyFun's Disclaimer and Privacy Policy. If you have any problems or suggestions feel free to Contact Us.
Loading Something Awesome!