Sunday March 12th is the beginning of Daylight Savings Time and time to perform the semi-annual maintenance of your smoke detectors.
The beginning and ending of Daylight Savings Time are great reminders to replace the batteries in our home smoke detectors. These are also great times to clean and test them as well. Be sure to check the manufacturers date on your detectors. All smoke detectors 10 years old or older need to be replaced. There is usually a sticker with a date of manufacture printed on it attached to the unit between the mounting bracket and the detector itself.
To clean your detectors simply blow them out with a can of compressed air (like what you would use to clean a computer keyboard). Dust and bugs that get inside the detectors can cause them to malfunction. It is recommended that you clean your smoke detectors at least once a month.
Each time after you have cleaned your smoke detector, be sure to test it. You may want to wear some hearing protection prior to pushing the test button. The tone emitted is quite loud.
In addition to smoke detector maintenance, cleaning your chimney now will help reduce the risk of having a chimney fire before the end of the burning season.
Burning in an inefficient manor and at a lower temperature causes creosote to deposit on the inside of your chimney. Over time this deposit can be significant and under certain conditions ignite, resulting in a chimney fire. Intense chimney fires can damage the chimney to the point of failure and spread to the surrounding structure.
Check with your stove’s manufacturer for a list of best practices and most efficient use of your appliance. Cleaning your chimney and adjusting your burning practices will help keep your property and family safe.