Installing & Testing Smoke Alarms

Correctly Installing Your Smoke Detectors

  • Install smoke alarms that are Underwriter Listed (examined and tested to appropriate product safety standards) by a qualified testing laboratory on every level of your home, including the basement (but not unfinished attics). Make sure there is an alarm in or near every sleeping area.
  • Mount the smoke alarms high on ceilings or walls – remember, smoke rises. Ceiling-mounted alarms should be installed at least four inches away from the nearest wall; wall-mounted alarms should be installed four to 12 inches away from the ceiling.
  • Don't install smoke alarms near windows, outside doors, or ducts where drafts might interfere with their operation.
  • Don't paint your smoke alarms; paint or other decorations could keep them from working when you most need it.