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When to Change the Batteries in Your Smoke Detector

The smoke alarms throughout your home help play a crucial role in keeping you and your family safe by alerting you to potential dangers. However, the best smoke alarms are no use if they do not have working batteries. It is important that you check, and test home smoke alarms often replace the batteries in order to ensure they are working properly.

What Smoke Alarm Do You Have?

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends changing the batteries in your smoke alarm every 6 months. At First Alert, we offer 10-year smoke alarms that have a built-in 10-year battery, which eliminates the need for battery replacements for the life of the alarms. We also offer hardwire alarms with a battery backup, for protection during power outages.

Testing and Changing Your Smoke Alarm Battery

It is recommended you test your alarms at least once a month to ensure they are working properly. If your smoke alarms are powered by a nine-volt battery, the battery should be replaced every 6 months, while the alarm itself should be replaced once every 10 years. For 10-year lithium-powered smoke alarms, you won’t need to replace the battery. Instead, replace the entire alarm after 10 years have passed. If your alarm is hardwired into your home’s electrical system, replace the backup battery at least every 6 months and replace the smoke alarm itself once every 10 years.

Signs You Need to Replace the Batteries In Your Smoke Detector

You’ll likely notice a high-pitched chirping noise coming from your smoke alarm if the batteries need to be changed. It is best to be proactive and change the batteries in your smoke alarms before that noise occurs. When you change the batteries in one alarm, make sure you change the batteries in the rest of the alarms in your home as well. A helpful reminder to check your smoke alarms and change the batteries every 6 months is Daylight Saving Time. Check your fire alarms when you change your clocks.


Installing smoke alarms will help keep you and your family safe. Browse our website to learn more about smoke alarms or other fire-related equipment such as fire escape ladders, fire extinguishers, and more!