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Smoke Detector Placement in room with 18ft high slanted ceiling


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#1 xiaphin

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 05:21 PM

We are renting out our house and the property management company requires a smoke detector in every room following NFPA regulations.  I'm struggling with where to mount the one for the master bedroom because of the ceiling.  There is a smoke detector in the loft space prior to walking into the room.

 

Where is the proper place to mount the detector?  I'd like for it not to be an eyesore if possible.  I was thinking above the door opening in the second pic which leads to the closets.  The third pic heads into the bathroom. Thanks in advance.  

 

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#2 RAL

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 05:41 PM

Smoke rises to the highest part of the room because it is hot, so the best place would be on the ceiling near the peak, but at least 6" away from any corners or wall edges.  If you place it lower down, or on a wall, it may take longer before it is able to detect the smoke.



#3 xiaphin

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Posted 04 January 2019 - 10:35 AM

Smoke rises to the highest part of the room because it is hot, so the best place would be on the ceiling near the peak, but at least 6" away from any corners or wall edges.  If you place it lower down, or on a wall, it may take longer before it is able to detect the smoke.

 

I agree this would be the best place but it would be impossible for my tenants to silence or change out the battery.  Carrying a ladder up our stairs that reaches that height is very difficult since they are a half spiral.  Hate to ask this but what would be a good compromise? Middle of the ceiling, 3/4 the way up?

Smoke rises to the highest part of the room because it is hot, so the best place would be on the ceiling near the peak, but at least 6" away from any corners or wall edges.  If you place it lower down, or on a wall, it may take longer before it is able to detect the smoke.

 

I agree this would be the best place but it would be impossible for my tenants to silence or change out the battery.  Carrying a ladder up our stairs that reaches that height is very difficult since they are a half spiral.



#4 ano

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Posted 04 January 2019 - 11:07 AM

I like to go eye level or slightly higher and 6" to 8" to the right or left of the door opening.  Some people keep their door open when sleeping and some close it, but the goal is to trigger on smoking in bed incidents. Whether tenants smoke or not, its always best to NEVER allow smoking in the bedrooms.



#5 pete_c

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Posted 04 January 2019 - 12:01 PM

Personally would just subcontract an electrician to put a smoke detector there.
 
Just upgraded all of the smokes in mom's ranch home with vaulted ceilings and a very high bedroom ceiling.  I did not like tip toeing on the top of a ladder on carpeting to replace the old smoke detector which was mounted on an electrical box almost to the top of the ceiling. I used the top of the ceiling to keep my balance.
 
I replaced a chandelier a while ago in my home and an electrician removed old one which was around 20 feet up.

Just ask for a price for completed job. It was a father son team that removed my old chandelier. The father was close to 70 and the son was around 40 something. It was the father who climbed the ladder and removed the old chandelier in less than 15 minutes while the son watched in awe. $75.

HOA / Property management companies et al may stifle your efforts any how unless approved by them. Ask them how much they would charge you to install a smoke detector.

#6 wkearney99

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Posted 05 January 2019 - 03:00 PM

I'd go with a position above a door that leads to other spaces that might likely be fire sources.  As in, not a closet, but the door out to the hallway.  Just be mindful not to position it where it's going to have air flowing across it.  Like on the path to/from an HVAC duct, or in the wash of a ceiling fan.

You want to balance between detection and risk of damage or injury if someone has to climb a ladder to deal with it.  Because what landlord wants to have to deal with patching holes from a broom handle during missed attempts to punch the button on a screaming detector?

Note, some local codes are requiring AC-powered systems now.  Battery alone is not acceptable.  Which, to be honest, is a wise requirement.  Because people are lazy and too many keep dying because of detectors with dead batteries.  It's an added expense/hassle to power them from AC but it'll seem like a pretty trivial expense after it saves someone's life.



#7 upstatemike

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Posted 05 January 2019 - 05:00 PM

Aren't there National codes that describe pretty specifically where smoke detectors have to be? I seem to recall very detailed info about minimum and maximum distances from walls and ceiling and air vents, ceiling must be measured from the highest point, If there is a barrier between two high sections then you must use two or more detectors as if the ceiling pockets were separate rooms, etc.

 

I know that new construction and remodel codes for AC vs. battery and so on varies by locality but I thought specs for actual placement within a room are pretty well established and universal, aren't they?



#8 pete_c

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Posted 05 January 2019 - 08:00 PM

the property management company requires a smoke detector in every room following NFPA regulations.
 
Reading this:
 
Installing and maintaining smoke alarms
 
A mention of interconnecting smokes above is optional and doesn't mention 120VAC connectivity for smokes.

Interconnected smoke alarms increase safety
 
New construction in FL in 1999 had contractor install smokes in every room in the house.  These were 120VAC connected.
 
New construction in the midwest in 2002 contractor only installed 4 smokes in the whole house.
 
Personally I would just install a battery powered smoke and be done with it.

#9 RAL

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Posted 05 January 2019 - 09:23 PM

According to the NFPA, in a room with a pitched ceiling, the smoke detector should be mounted no closer than 4 inches to the peak, and no further than 36 inches away.  No exceptions for "but it's difficult to silence it when it's high up and a pain to change the batteries."



#10 xiaphin

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 02:44 PM

I was hoping there would be a location that would be closer to the floor that would satisfy the NFPA guidelines.  Installing it isn't a problem nor is lugging the ladder up the stairs for me.  It will be a different story for someone renting the place because they would have to call maintenance if it started acting up or needed a battery change.

 

Long story short, the occupants safety is more important than the chances they are annoyed by not being able to silence it themselves.

 

Any good detectors that have a voice cancel feature for beeps?  I think the nest can silence with the app but they are over $100.



#11 ano

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 03:14 PM

Installing new lithium 9V batteries every few years is probably cheap insurance. If you change the batteries on a schedule, the renters won't have to.
 
In the works for 2020 are new UL approved smoke alarms that minimize false alarms from cooking. These smoke alarms are JUST starting to hit the market, so they may be worth looking for if you can find them. If you can wait a few months, they will be everywhere soon.
 
https://savemoreonfi...ds-learn-means/

Update: Maybe a bit optimistic on the availability of these smoke alarms, but there are a few out now (I found 2 quite expensive ones.) Cheaper ones will come with time. Anyway look for: UL 268 7th edition certification.

Edited by ano, 08 January 2019 - 03:30 PM.


#12 RAL

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 03:24 PM

Many smoke alarms now come with 10-year batteries.  Smoke alarms need to be replaced after 10 years, so the battery will last for the full lifetime of the unit.



#13 ano

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 03:33 PM

Many smoke alarms now come with 10-year batteries.  Smoke alarms need to be replaced after 10 years, so the battery will last for the full lifetime of the unit.

The problem with many of those is that they are not 120V powered and alarm interconnected, both of which are required in many areas. Otherwise they are a good choice.



#14 lanbrown

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 11:45 PM

I was hoping there would be a location that would be closer to the floor that would satisfy the NFPA guidelines.  Installing it isn't a problem nor is lugging the ladder up the stairs for me.  It will be a different story for someone renting the place because they would have to call maintenance if it started acting up or needed a battery change.

 

Long story short, the occupants safety is more important than the chances they are annoyed by not being able to silence it themselves.

 

Any good detectors that have a voice cancel feature for beeps?  I think the nest can silence with the app but they are over $100.

 

You can find Nest Protects new for under $100.  However, one disadvantage is that since smoke detectors should/required to communicate with the others, you just can't install a single Nest Protect.  Many detectors these days have another wire so they ca communicate (put 9 volts on the line) so the others will also go off.  The Nest Protect can't use that wire and they form their own wireless mesh.  So you really need to replace all of them.  They do last a decade though.  The battery backup in the AC powered units last several years.  So if the code requires that they be interconnected, then the Nest Protect is out unless you replace all existing units.



#15 ano

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Posted 09 January 2019 - 04:57 PM

You can find Nest Protects new for under $100.  However, one disadvantage is that since smoke detectors should/required to communicate with the others, you just can't install a single Nest Protect.  Many detectors these days have another wire so they ca communicate (put 9 volts on the line) so the others will also go off.  The Nest Protect can't use that wire and they form their own wireless mesh.  So you really need to replace all of them.  They do last a decade though.  The battery backup in the AC powered units last several years.  So if the code requires that they be interconnected, then the Nest Protect is out unless you replace all existing units.

Also I'm not sure I would spend lots on a Nest Connect now since it doesn't meet the requirements for Smoke Detectors installed after May 2020.  Its unclear if they can be upgraded to this with firmware.  I think its a hardware change, from what I hear.






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