Daylight Saving Time begins Sunday, March 8 at 2 a.m., when we spring forward one hour for the purpose of making better use of daylight. As we set our clocks ahead, the Gallup Fire Department recommends testing your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.
Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are two of the most important safety devices in your home. Because of this, it is extremely important that these devices be maintained properly. The beginning of daylight savings time is a good reminder to make sure that these items are in good working condition.
Roughly two-thirds of home fire deaths occur in homes with no or non working smoke alarms. When smoke alarms should have worked but failed to operate, it’s usually because batteries were missing, disconnected, or dead. The Gallup Fire department recommends the following guidelines around smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors:
- Test smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms at least once a month using the test button.
- Make sure everyone in the home understands the sound of the smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector and knows how to respond.
- Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.
- Replace the smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector immediately if it doesn’t respond properly when tested.
- Smoke alarms with non-replaceable (long-life) batteries are designed to remain effective for up to 10 years. If the alarm chirps, a warning that the battery is low, replace the entire smoke alarm right away.
- For smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors with any other type of batter, replace batteries when you change your clocks for daylight savings. If the alarm chirps, replace only the battery.
- They should also be cleaned whenever the batteries are changed. follow your manufacturer’s instructions for proper cleaning technique. Cleaning generally involved using a vacuum cleaner to remove built-up dust particles.
- When installing a new alarm or detector mark it with the installation date, so you known when it is to be replaced. It’s a good idea to mark it in a place where you will see it when replacing the batteries so that you will have an easy reminder.
The City of Gallup Fire Department is offering a free smoke detector to residents of the City of Gallup. A member of the Fire Department will meet with you and either check, or install a free smoke detector in your home. During this visit you will also be provided with fire prevention literature and a discussion on Home Fire Escape Planning.
If you currently live in the city limits and don’t have a smoke detector or are not sure yours are working properly, the Gallup Fire Department will continue to offer this free service while supplies last. Please call the Gallup Fire Department Fire Prevention Office at 505-726-5448 or stop by the fire station at 1800 South Second Street to sign up for an installation appointment to have a representative from the Gallup Fire Department come to your home to either check, or install a detector. There is no charge for this service. Supplies are limited so please give us a call Thank you and let’s all look forward to a safe and happy 2020.