ASHLAND, Ky. (WSAZ) – We’ve turned the clocks ahead to get an extra hour of daylight, and firefighters say this weekend is also a good time to change the batteries in your smoke detectors.
Thomas Gibbons and his wife are in the process of moving into a new house in Ashland, Ky. Gibbons tells WSAZ.com that smoke alarms are not at the top of their priority list, but they are certainly on the list.
“We're just moving in. We haven't gotten to it yet,” Gibbons said. “But you can be sure we will have them in there, everywhere.”
Firefighters recommend changing the batteries in smoke detectors twice a year and say a simple way to remember is by doing it at the beginning and end of daylight saving time.
“You have to change your clocks, so it's probably just the easiest way to remember to change the batteries,” Richard Carr, a firefighter with the Ashland Fire Department, said.
Carr said he and his fellow firefighters take calls Monday through Friday from property owners in Ashland and will check smoke detectors or install new ones if necessary.
“We've been in a lot of houses where we hear them chirping, which is something that is there to indicate that your battery is low,” Carr said. “It doesn't have to be to install new ones. We'll check anything that you have.”
Carr demonstrated how to change the nine-volt battery on most smoke detectors, showing that the battery can be replaced and then tested by pressing a button on the front of the alarm.
Gibbons said he hoped other people would spend the money to buy or replace a smoke detector.
“They’ve got to be listening up,” Gibbons said. “If they don't, they're going to pay the price.”
Carr tells WSAZ.com smoke detectors typically last for about ten years.