Connecting and linking smoke/heat alarms

20 May 2009
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United Kingdom
Hi. I intend to install a selection of ionisation and optical smoke alarms and a heat alarm . They will be Kidde mains interlinked alarms on a dedicated circuit from a consumer box.

The alarms all come with three short (about 10 inch) soldered electrical tails which are to be interlinked with flat three core 1mm cable. All alarms will be ceiling mounted and the wiring can be accessed from the floor of the rooms above with one exception which will be beneath a flat roof cavity but can still be accessed through the ceiling.

I have two questions please:

First one relates to the interlinking between the alarms. Can I connect the 3 tails to the flat cable using "choc" connectors or are there alternatives?

Secondly, I understand that the link from the consumer box to the first alarm in the chain should also be 3 core but in this case ordinary lighting cable (ie. 2 core plus earth). As there is no actual earth connection on any of the alarms I am puzzled by the purpose of the earth lead. Do you have any comments on this please.
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