Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Review: Kidde 10 Year Smoke Alarm

Recently I won a Kidde 10 Year Sealed Battery Smoke Alarm on their Facebook page. I received it a few weeks ago. 374 and I finally agreed on a spot in our house to install it.

Even before I became a fire wife, I was always fire conscious. I never leave anything on or running when I leave the house, even for a few minutes. I unplug most appliances and devices when they are not in use. Installing new and more smoke alarms was at the top of my to do list when we bought our home. So when I won this new "toy", not only was the resident firefighter excited, I was as well.

I hope I can never attest to just how well this smoke alarm performs. However I can rave about it's features. The main feature of this smoke alarm is it's ten year battery. How many of us are on top of changing the batteries in the smoke alarms on a regular basis, not just when it chirps as the battery is dying? This model's battery never needs replacing. Additionally, you can't even get to the battery without breaking the device open, causing it to deactivate permanently. There's no random chirping inconveniently in the middle of the night, or just as you've laid you little one down for a nap. This alarm will only chirp at the end of the ten years when the battery is about to expire.

Ten years. Why does the battery expire in ten years? Why isn't it five years, or fifteen years? The NFPA (National Fire Protection Agency) recommends that you replace your smoke alarms every ten years. Yes, even smoke alarms have a life span. You may be a family who regularly changes their smoke alarm batteries, but your smoke alarm itself may fail if it is an older unit. Those fresh batteries do no good if your device is out of date. To ensure you get the entire ten years out of your battery, the battery is not activated until you install it on the provided mounting bracket.

What's another feature I love? The Hush control. We've all had those moments in the kitchen when you leave the pizza in the oven just a bit too long, or set the setting on the toaster a little to dark. This results in you frantically waving a dish towel or pot holder in front of the squawking smoke alarm to fan the smoke away. With this model, if a known smoke condition is causing the alarm to sound, you can push the Hush button to desensitize the alarm for 8 minutes. However, if the smoke becomes more dense the alarm will override the Hush feature and sound continuously.

We installed the alarm in our office. It was one of the few spots in our home that did not already have an alarm. Installation was easy. Two screws are needed to secure the mounting bracket to the desired location. Then installing the alarm to the bracket is complete by rotating it clockwise on the bracket until it ratchets. This also activates the battery.

Would I actually purchase this model for use in my home? Most definitely. 374 and I are currently looking into doing a complete overhaul of our existing alarms. This Kidde model is at the top of our wish list.

I would like to thank Kidde for the opportunity to win this alarm. This past June they gave away one of these alarms every day of the month. That's 30 smoke alarms to 30 different households. I think of all the homes that received this alarm that may not have had even one alarm in any location in their home. Or the people who may not have been aware of the need to replace their smoke alarms. I'm sure they inspired more homes to be more fire conscious. To this fire family, that's amazing. It's one less burning building a firefighter has to run into, risking his life.

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