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Regulations regarding smoke/heat detectors

Discussion in 'Building Regulations and Planning Permission' started by plcanonica, 6 Dec 2019.

  1. plcanonica

    plcanonica

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    We had some work done to our house, including replacing all the smoke and heat detectors. We have an Edwardian terrace house (3 floors including loft conversion) in London and now have:
    Aico EI144RC Mains & Battery-Powered Heat Alarm in the kitchen;
    Aico EI141RC Ionisation Smoke Alarms in the hallways on each floor.
    All the detectors are interlinked, either fixed wiring or wireless. However an electrician who visited the house has told us that we need to change the smoke detectors because in hallways they need to be optical detectors, not ionisation ones.

    I can't find any regulation that confirms this however. All the regs I can find just mention a smoke detector, but not the type. Do I actually need to change our brand new smoke detectors to the optical type?
     
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  3. SFK

    SFK

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    Piccanonica,
    There are no 'regulations' for the type of Smoke detector you need in a location.
    You do not have to have 'optical' over 'ion' detectors in Hallways - they are only recommendations. And the difference is that optical have less errors over ionistaion.

    If you are very worried you can call Aico - I have found them helpful.

    SFK
     
    Last edited: 6 Dec 2019
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  4. ^woody^

    ^woody^

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    There is no standard for types of smoke detector, just recommendations.

    The theory is, ionisation for fast flaming fires in places like bedrooms, and optical for slower smoldering fires with more smoke than heat in places like hallways or living rooms. But in practice the difference in detection rates is marginal, and ionisation would be more sensitive with less smoke particles required to set it of - but they may also be more liable to false alarms due to the increased sensitivity.

    Whilst it wont be much of an issue in practice, it may depend what you specified to the installer. You should expect a specialist firm to follow best practice guidelines, but if it was a jobbing firm they may well not. Having said that, what should have been done regardless is that a proper risk assessment made of the whole property in accordance with BS 5839 and detectors placed in all areas based on actual risk, not just kitchen, hall and landings.

    As it is though, the only risk is of more false alarms from the toast or incense sticks.
     
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