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What is causing my smoke alarm to sound, beep, or chirp?

Aug 13, 2015

Loud continuous alarming

When the smoke alarm detects combustible products and goes into alarm mode, the pulsating alarm will continue until the air has cleared. For procedures on what to do when your alarm is in active alarm mode, go to What to do When Your Smoke Alarm Sounds.

If a false alarm is activated, one of the following may be the reason:

  • The battery may be loose or installed improperly
  • The smoke alarm sensing chamber may be dirty
  • Humidity, steam, or other environmental factors
  • An electrical condition may be causing power to the unit to be interrupted
  • The alarm may have reached its end of life


First make sure it isn't a real alarm, and then learn how to silence a nuisance or false alarm

Consistent chirping

If a smoke alarm is chirping consistently, one of the following may be the reason:

  • The smoke alarm’s battery may need to be replaced. An alarm will chirp every 30 to 60 seconds for a minimum of seven days.
  • The smoke alarm may be malfunctioning. An alarm will chirp between flashes of the red LED light.
  • The Hush feature may be activated. An alarm will chirp every 30 to 40 seconds for approximately seven minutes while the Hush feature is activated.
  • The smoke alarm may have reached its end of life (sealed battery models only). An alarm will chirp every 30 seconds to indicate it is time to replace the alarm.
  • There may be interference from a similar system nearby (wireless alarms only).


For ways to troubleshoot the problem, go to What are the causes for consistent chirping?

Intermittent chirping (without a regular pattern)

If a smoke alarm is chirping intermittently, one of the following may be the reason:

  • The battery may be loose or installed improperly
  • The smoke alarm sensing chamber may be dirty
  • Humidity, steam, or other environmental factors
  • An electrical condition may be causing power to the unit to be interrupted
  • The alarm may have reached its end of life


For ways to troubleshoot the problem, go to What causes intermittent beeping or chirping?


Replace your smoke alarms today if they are past their end of life.

 

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