ADT Security Pro - Home Security Blog

How to Survive a Fire with ADT Monitored Smoke Detectors

Posted by Taniqua Pino on Fri,Mar 27,2015 @ 03:30 PM

With ADT's Monitored Smoke Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors, threats to your home and family can be detected before your family is harmed. Due to the number of fire related deaths, all 50 states have some form of requirement for smoke detectors. To satisfy code, many homeowners and builders select economical smoke detectors thinking that all smoke detectors do the same job. However, to create the safest environment for you and your loved ones, your home and business should have monitored photoelectric smoke detectors connected to a system that is tested regularly as part of a well planned evacuation plan. Having your smoke detectors monitored not only protects you when you are at home, it assures that the fire department will be dispatched to your home when a fire occurs while vacant.

Monitored Technology: Ionization Smoke Detectors vs.. Photoelectric Smoke Detectors

3000 people a year die in residential fires, another 20,000 people are injured. Giving your family the best chances of survival in a fire requires using the best technology. Many deaths are associated with non-functioning detectors that have dead or no batteries or have been intentionally disconnected. Recently, Ionization Smoke detectors have been under fire for activating anytime something on the stove burns or excessive dust is present. These nuisance alarms are the reasons some people purposely disconnect a smoke alarm. More concerning about ionization smoke detectors is video after video hitting the internet featuring Ionization detectors taking up to 40 minutes to respond when surrounded by smoke. Take a look at this video from NBC news:

Ionization smoke detectors make up over 90% of smoke detectors installed in American homes. Some suggest having both Ionization and Photoelectric technologies in your home is the solution, however, the false alarms, nuisance alarms and evidence of faulty reaction time point to a better solution.

Related article: Ionization vs.. Photoelectric Smoke Alarms: In Real World Fires The Differences Are Deadly

ADT's monitored smoke detectors use Photoelectric technology which is known for quick detection of slow building fires such as in-wall electrical fires, burning cigarettes or fires that smolder. ADT monitored smoke detectors also have a built in heat detector that detects temperatures suggesting a fire, or a rapid rise in temperature. With your monitored detectors accompanied by a good evacuation plan, you and your family can produce the safest possible results.

You can also now purchase photoelectirc smoke and carbon monoxide detecotrs that talk and light up. For less than the cost of a monitored smoke detector and a monitored carbon monoxide detector, have a combo unit installed that weill verbally tell you what has been detected and how you should respond. Learn more here. 


Make an Evacuation Plan to Respond Safely to Your Monitored Smoke Alarms

Having a plan is the only way for all members of the household to remain calm and clear headed in the event of an emergency. The National Fire Protection Agency's website offers step by step instructions to create a fire evacuation plan for any household including tips for small children, the elderly and residents with medical conditions. Here are the 9 basic steps:

  1. Draw a map of your home. Show all doors and windows.
  2. Visit each room. Find two ways out.  
  3. All windows and doors should open easily. You should be able to use them to get outside.
  4. Make sure your home has smoke alarms. Push the test button to make sure each alarm is working.
  5. Pick a meeting place outside. It should be in front of your home. Everyone will meet at the meeting place.  
  6. Make sure your house or building number can be seen from the street. 
  7. Talk about your plan with everyone in your home. 
  8. Learn the emergency phone number for your fire department.
  9. Practice your home fire escape drill often!

The burn institute offers a free on-line tutorial to help you create a fire evacuation map for your home. Don't forget monitored carbon monoxide detectors to protect you against deadly gases. Once you have monitored smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, use the burn institute's tutorial to create an evacuation map and then call in and test your system. 


Test Your System and Practice Your Fire Evacuation Plan with Using Your Monitored Fire Protection


Practicing your evacuation plan with your system is easy and vital. It is not realistic to think that your family can remain calm and clear minded in an emergency without having practiced a plan. To start, call ADT at 1 (888) 298-9274 and inform the representative that you would like to place your system "on test" for the amount of time that you want to practice your fire or carbon monoxide response plan. Once all occupants are comfortable with the evacuation plan, arm your system to stay, no delay, and inform everyone that you are going to activate the fire siren by pressing and holding the fire button on your panel and then practice appropriate evacuation procedures with the fire being in different parts of the home. Make sure to activate the police and medical sirens as well so everyone can distinguish the different sirens your panel makes. Note that the siren is the same when smoke or carbon monoxide gas is detected. While your system is on test, this is a logical time to test every sensor in your system.

If you opted for the ADT monitoring with two way Voice, inform ADT you would like your system on test with two-way voice verification. Each time your alarm is activated, an operator will speak to you directly through your panel. If a fire is detected and it is not obvious, the representative can alert you to exactly which smoke detector or carbon monoxide detector was activated

Although your monitored ADT system will detect malfunctions, It is an industry standard to test your system with the ADT monitoring station monthly. This not only assures that your system is still working perfectly, it also verifies that no changes in your home have affected the system. For example, if your system utilizes a land line and the phone company does work on the phone lines, outside or inside, it can affect your connection. Also, most panels will alert you when you arm the system if an opening like a window is not closed. You can tell the panel to arm anyhow and bypass that opening. If you forget to un-bypass that opening, it will stay bypassed until you manually change it back. Testing your system will call these issues to attention. Although they are uncommon, in a life and death situation, it's best to be certain.


How ADT Pulse assists Your Monitored Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

The home automation portion of your ADT Pulse system helps your home assist you when danger is present. The following automations can make a big difference in the ease of evacuation if a fire were to occur. They can also help you stay calm by solving several small but important issues that can become major issue in an emergency.

  1. Using your ADT Pulse Thermostat, set the fan on your cooling/heating unit to turn off when smoke or carbon monoxide is detected. This will keep smoke from being spread to all rooms and prevent the fan from feeding oxygen to the fire. 
  2. Using ADT Pulse light switches, dimmer and modules,  or light modules, have lights turn on to light the way for evacuation. You could also have lights flash in rooms of heavy sleepers to assist in waking them up.
  3. Set ADT Pulse locks on doors where you might evacuate, to automatically unlock for a speedy exit. This could be an important step when carrying young children or assisting someone elderly or with medical conditions.
  4. And know that if you are not home, once you have an email and/or a text phone number on your account, you will receive an alert if smoke or carbon monoxide is detected by your system.

ADT Pulse's features not only make daily life simpler, they can be there for you when you really need them.

To learn more about a monitored ADT system or a monitored ADT Pulse system, call for your FREE Home security Review Today or click below and we'll call you. 








Tags: ADT Pulse Equipment and Packages