HomePublic EducationSmoke Alarm Program

Smoke Alarm Program

The North Charleston Fire Department has partnered with the American Red Cross of SC and Fire Safe SC to provide our citizens with a free smoke alarm program.  During our the free home visit, NCFD firefighters will check to make sure your smoke alarms: in the right location, working and within ten years from the manufacture date.  If needed, firefighters will install 10 year lithium alarms to make sure you and your family are properly protected.   Firefighters will also discuss creating an escape plan, and any hazards or safety concerns found during the home visit.

This program is designed for homeowners.  If you are an landlord, you are obligate by law to provide up-to-date alarms for your tenants. You may find more information on our Smoke Alarm Regulations for Rental Properties page.

To request a free home visit, call our headquarters at 843-740-2616.

Smoke Alarm Tips & Information

Where do I put smoke alarms in my home?

  • A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire. Put smoke alarms inside and outside each bedroom and sleeping area. Put alarms on every level of the home. Smoke alarms should be interconnected. When one sounds, they all sound.
  • Place smoke alarms on the ceiling or high on the wall. Check the manufacturer’s instructions for the best place for your alarm.
  • Only qualified electricians should install hardwired smoke alarms.

How do I take care of my smoke alarm?

  • Test the alarm monthly.
  • Replace the batteries at least once every year.
  • Replace the entire smoke alarm every 10 years.

What powers a smoke alarm?

Smoke alarms are powered by battery or by your home’s electrical system. If the smoke alarm is powered by battery, it runs on either a disposable nine-volt battery or a non-replaceable 10-year lithium (“long-life”) battery. Alarms that get power from your home’s electrical system, or “hardwired,” usually have a back-up battery that will need to be replaced once a year.