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How Do Smoke Detectors Work?

smoke-detectorWe all want to live comfortably in our homes, and that is not really possible if we are not able to live safely in them. You cannot be truly comfortable if you are constantly concerned about worst case scenarios in your living space. That is precisely why modern homeowners have access to so many safety devices readily available for installation in their homes. Chief among these is the smoke detector.

Even the best smoke detector will fail to protect if not installed properly by an electrician in Shoreline, WA, of course.

Fortunately for you, you’re reading this right now. Why is this fortunate? Because it proves that you’ve already found an electrical company that you can trust to do the job the right way: us! Before you go investing in new smoke alarms for your home, we want to make sure that you have a basic understanding of how it is that you smoke detectors work. Read on, and be sure to reach out to us with any questions that you may have.

They Sense Smoke and Beep—What Else Is There to Know?

A lot, if that’s your take on the situation!

First of all, there are different types of fires, right? If you use a fireplace or go camping, then you know that very dry wood will go up very quickly, burning in a flash and generating big licks of flame. This type of fire can do a lot of damage very quickly, proving to be quite dangerous. An ionization smoke alarm is the type of alarm that will best protect against such quick fires.

Ionization smoke alarms house a small bit of radioactive material within, and this is located between two electrically-charged plates. This setup ionizes the air, causing current to pass between the two plates. This current and the flow of ions is interrupted by smoke entering the chamber, and it is that interruption that sets the alarm off and gives you the signal that there is something wrong in your home!

But what about wood that is not so well-seasoned. Have you ever been camping and had a big, dense log that visibly pushes out moisture as it burns? It doesn’t really generate those big flames, right? Instead, it just kind of smolders for a longer period of time.

These smoldering fires can also develop in one’s home, and they are quite dangerous. Not only is there the risk of the fire spreading, but you also have a real hazard in the form of smoke inhalation, too. A photoelectric smoke alarm is very responsive to this type of fire.

These alarms have a light source directed into a sensing chamber within the device. That light source is angled away from the actual sensor. When smoke enters the chamber, it redirects the light and sets off the alarm.

Using multiple smoke detectors throughout the house, of different styles, is the best way in which to ensure that you are fully protected.

Schedule your smoke detector services with G & S Heating Cooling & Electric.

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