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Olive Oil Lamp Set Off Smoke Detectors?

Why would an oil lamp filled with olive oil set off a smoke alarm after being lit for 4 hours when there's no visible smoke? How can I stop that from happening? This happened once before with safflower oil. It seems random - last week it was lit longer, until there was no more oil, and the alarm stayed silent.

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I use a traditional butter lamp - basically a metal goblet and a piece of a cotton ball rolled into a 1/4" thick wick inserted in the center of the goblet with its tip about a 1/4" above the oil.

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
April 26, 20200 found this helpful

Ours goes off from the heat, not the smoke. You may just want to move the lamp around until you find a place where it doesn't trigger the device. Glad the device works! Leave it be!!

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April 27, 20200 found this helpful

The heat was to high for this area. Sometimes a better ventilated place helps. Make sure there are not a lot of items near it.

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Certain oils create higher heat and smoke. If you have a choice, try using oil that has less burn off!

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
April 27, 20200 found this helpful

Olive oil is fine for your lamp. Where do you have it set? Is it near your smoke alarm. Normally smoke alarms go off from heat or smote. If the lamp is not smoking then it must be the heat. I would move this away from that area and place it in another area.

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April 28, 20200 found this helpful

I'm sure distance from the smoke alarm has a lot to do with this but if you are placing it in the same spot and the smoke alarm is going off at different times then most likely it has to do with the air movement of either a ceiling fan or your AC turning on more often as that will cool the air before it reaches the alarm.

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These alarms are called 'smoke alarms' but they are really heat/smoke alarms and are definitely something to keep working properly in any home.

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April 29, 20200 found this helpful

It is possible that the olive oil is burning hotter and that's what's setting off the smoke alarm. Maybe go back to the safflower oil.

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