Every smoke alarm has an expiration date: What’s yours?


The Asheville Fire Department urges City of Asheville residents
to know how old their smoke alarms are,
and to replace them every 10 years


Does your home have a smoke alarm? According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the answer is likely yes: NFPA research shows that most American homes have at least one. But do you know how old your smoke alarms are? If you’re like most people, you’re probably not so sure.

A recent survey conducted by NFPA revealed that only a small percentage of people know how old their smoke alarms are, or how often they need to be replaced. That lack of awareness is a concern for the Asheville Fire Department and NFPA, along with fire departments throughout the country, because smoke alarms don’t last forever.

“Time and again, I’ve seen the life-saving impact smoke alarms can have in a home fire, but I’ve also seen the tragedy that can result when smoke alarms aren’t working properly,” said Kelley Klope, Asheville Fire Department Public Information Officer. “That’s why we’re making a concerted effort to educate the City of Asheville residents about the overall importance of smoke alarms, and that they do have a life limit.”

As the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week for more than 90 years, NFPA is promoting this year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign — “Don’t Wait – Check the Date! Replace Smoke Alarms Every 10 Years” — to better educate the public about the critical importance of knowing how old their smoke alarms are and replacing them once they’re 10 years old. Fire Prevention Week is October 9-15.


Local kickoff

The Asheville Fire Department will host a Fire Prevention Week kickoff event at Home Depot, 127 Acton Circle, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 1. Activities will include:

  • Fire safety trailer, Sparky the Fire Dog, Haz Mat truck with robot, and fire gear for children to try on!
  • Home Depot will have games and build-a-fire-truck project
  • There will be a Safe Kids booster seat blitz. Free booster seats will be given to kids that meet the requirements; the child must be present.
  • The Asheville Police Department and American Red Cross will also participate, sharing safety messages.


Check your smoke alarm

To find out how old your smoke alarm is and its expiration date, simply look on the back of the alarm where the date of manufacture is marked. The smoke alarm should be replaced 10 years from that date (not the date of purchase). The Asheville Fire Department also recommends smoke alarms should be tested monthly, and that batteries should be replaced twice a year when you change your clocks for daylight savings time.

For more information on smoke alarms and this year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign, “Don’t Wait: Check the Date! Replace Smoke Alarms Every 10 Years,” visit firepreventionweek.org.