The El Paso Fire Department would like to remind everyone how vital it is to have and maintain a smoke alarm in every home.

A smoke alarm is a vital device that can save lives and property damage the moment it senses smoke from a fire. Smoke alarms vary in price depending on the model and can range from $8-$100.

According to the National Fire Protection Association the death rate per 100 reported home fires are more than twice as high in homes that did not have any working smoke alarms compared to the rate in homes with working smoke alarms (1.18 deaths vs. 0.53 deaths per 100 fires).

Therefore, it is imperative that you take some simple steps to ensure that you have a functioning smoke alarm in every room, hallway and that you follow the following tips provided by the El Paso Fire Department.

  • Make sure your smoke alarm has a test button and that you test them once a month.
  • A chirping alarm means it needs a new battery (Batteries should be checked every 6 months).
  • Keep your smoke alarms clean and free of dust and dirt.
  • Never paint a smoke alarm because it can block the vents in the cover, preventing smoke from triggering the sensors.
  • Smoke alarms should be replaced every 5 to10 years, depending on the manufacturer’s recommendations.

For more info on the free smoke alarm program provided by the El Paso Fire Department visit epfire.com or call 3-1-1.