You’ve got smoke alarms and smoke detectors in your home, you press the button every now and again to make sure the batteries aren’t dead, but how do you really know your smoke detector will alarm when smoke is present?
The answer is you don’t. For extra safety and extra peace of mind, a lot of people will use smoke detector testers that mimic the properties of smoke, to test whether or not the smoke alarm is fully functioning.
In this article, we’ll look at why you should use a smoke detector tester, and reveal the best smoke detector tester to give you total peace of mind.
Below is a table of contents. Clicking on any of these headings will jump you immediately to that piece of content. We are Amazon Associates and earn a commission from qualifying purchases.
Table of Contents
Best Smoke Detector Tester
Here’s the best smoke detector tester for your home, your rental properties or even your small business.
The Smoke Sabre
The Smoke Sabre is the best smoke detector tester money can buy. It’s a cheap and affordable option for testing your home smoke alarms on a regular basis, and it’s also a much safer option than trying to burn something directly underneath your detector head (Please don’t try burning anything under a detector to test it!).
The Sabre is essentially a normal aerosol container containing a specicailly designed chemical compound that replicates the properties of smoke. It’s easy to use (point and spray) and uses a compound that leaves no residue on your detector head or the elements inside your detector.
It comes complete with a cone shaped nozzle (13 inches long) which helps with direction, ensuring that a quick squeeze of the button is all that’s needed to trigger your smoke alarm.
Here’s a quick rundown of the features of this product:
- Suitable for home use. Suitable for landlords and small offices.
- Twist and pull cone for maximum directional control.
- Special compound ensures no residue on the sensor chamber
- Small and easy to store (store away from naked flames and heat sources)
- 100’s of test cycles (dependant on conditions).
- Suitable for any type of smoke detector.
- Ultimate peace of mind that your detectors are fully operational.
How To Use A Smoke Detector Tester
It’s really quite simple to use the Smoke Sabre.
Simply twist the top, extend the cone and point and hold within approximately 6 inches of the detector and give the button a quick squeeze. This will disperse a small amount of fog like mist, which will in turn, hopefully set off your smoke detector.
Any more than 6 inches away, and you will need to hold the button longer to enable more of the compound to enter the air, so it’s recommended that you get to within 6 inches of your detector to invrease the products longevity.
Beware – Some Testers Cause Damage
I am aware of other similar products on the market that cause build up of chemicals and residue on the chamber of detectors. Some users have reported that after testing, their smoke alarm then becomes defunct – an indication that some products can do the opposite of what we are trying to achieve by clogging up the sensor chamber and making a previously working smoke detector useless.
The Sabre we have chosen here uses compounds that do not create residue after testing. Beware of other products that can potentially leave you with a defunct smoke alarm or detector.
Smoke Alarm Testing
In business premises, most smoke alarm testing is done by professionals that test the detector head with a chemical compound that replicates smoke. they use professional equipment (see image below), to check the integrity of smoke alarms.
The question is though, if they are doing it correctly, why would you not do it correctly in your own home, too?
Most people are happy with testing their smoke alarm by pressing the test button on the head.
What people fail to realise is that this tests only the function of the battery, and the function of the audible alarm or siren – it doesn’t test whether when smoke is present, the detector will detect it and go into audible alarm.
Imagine having a smoke detector that doesn’t alarm when smoke is present? Unfortunately, this can happen, especially if you have older smoke alarms that may be clogged up with dirt and dust. Occassionally, manufacturing faults can also contribute to this, where smoke detectors have been sold and have subsequently turned out to be faulty.
And that’s why you should always buy a brand you trust (See: UK Top 3 Smoke Detectors).
Having and using a smoke detector tester will give you the ultimate peace of mind that your smoke alarm or smoke detector is working and will alarm in the event of a fire or when smoke is present.
Pressing the ‘test’ button which is usually a big button on the head of the detector is not testing the capability of the alarm, instead, it’s testing the battery and testing the validity of the alarm sound.
Businesses are required by law to have regular checks of their detection systems, and part of this test is to actually present a smoke source to the detector head to prove that it works – so why not do this at home too?
Whilst it may seem overboard for some, I thoroughly recommend you purchase this product to give you, your family and your home the extra peace of mind that your smoke detectors are in full working condition.
Other Articles You May Like
Here’s a list of articles from our website related to home fire safety.
- Home Fire Safety: The Definitive Guide
- Fire Escape Plan – Why You MUST Have One
- Do I Need A Fire Extinguisher For Home?
- Fire Angel Heat Detector For Kitchens – Review
Here’s a list of all products mentioned in this article on the best smoke detector testers for home use. We are Amazon Associates, and earn a commission on qualifying purchases.
Questions & Comments
Let me know in the comments – how many smoke detectors do you have/plan to have around your home? Do you have smoke alarms in every room and do you conduct any tests apart from pressing the ‘test’ button?? In your opinion, what are the best smoke detector testers for home use?
Whatever your question or comment, just drop it in the comments box below.
Stay Safe. Stay Secure.