Replace hard wired smoke detectors?

Hi, My house has hard-wired 120v smoke detectors. One went off today for a few seconds. So I climbed up to take a look, and I noticed on the plastic housing it says replace by year 2005. I tried the test button and it worked, I actually tried the test button on all the detectors and they all worked. Should I replace all the detectors? They seem to be working, based on the test button. I know there are recommendations on replacing battery operated ones but not hard-wired ones.
Thanks, Jeff
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Jeff Guay wrote:

All kinds sound be replaced. BTW many if not all hard wired detectors have backup batteries as well. Even if you already know this maybe some others don't and that could have been why it sounded, the backup battery may be going low.
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Joseph Meehan

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Some of these don't have battery backups. I took all mine down and put a flat metal white cover you can buy at Home Depot over the opening and then I installed all battery types. You wouldn't want to take a chance if the power should go off before the smoke arrived.
Jeff Guay wrote:

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I would replace them as suggested by the manufacturer. One possibility to look at is whether your hard-wired detectors are interconnected. When I was rehabbing a 3-story house, I put detectors on each floor, hard-wired, and interconnected. One went off - they all went off. (Yes, it was LOUD). I couldn't find battery backup detectors at the time - early 90's - either they weren't available or I didn't search enough. So I also installed battery-powered detectors on each floor (not interconnected). Even for all those detectors, I spent less than $200 - cheap protection for multiple lives and a $150K house.
But I would think that hard-wired, battery-backup, interconnected detectors would be the best. Overly cautious perhaps, as I've never set a house on fire, but you never know.
steve
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Joey wrote:

Statistically what you did had just the opposite effect. I've never read a story or heard of anyone dying in a fire because the power to the AC smoke detectors went off. But I read and hear frequently about people dying in fires because the batteries were dead and had not been replaced periodically. The latter is the far more common occurence.
Why didn't you just replace them with units that are AC plus battery?

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Didn't want to go much into detail, but I replaced my hard wired AC detecters with several connected to my alarm system. So, I now have battery back up.
snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

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says...

The probability that the power will be off during a fire is pretty low. I'd bet it's far lower than the chances that the batteries will be dead in a battery-powered smoke detector, which is probably why hard-wired smoke detectors are mandated by code.
If you're really worried, either replace the AC smoke detectors with ones that have battery backup, or keep the hard-wired detectors and add a couple of battery-powered detectors to your home.
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On Fri, 3 Mar 2006 15:32:11 -0500, "Jeff Guay"

I would think that is good test sometimes, but a better test would be to once in a while hold a lit cigarette or match nearby. I don't know how to calibrate this, but that's what I do.

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I wouldn't replace hard-wired with battery- could be a code violation, depending where you live. I would use those with back-up battery for sure. They do wear out and need replacement- forget why exactly. I've also read that smoke testing them 1-2 times a year is advisable- try not to set house on fire in the process!
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Jeff Guay wrote:

The "Test" button tests whether the sucker can make a noise, not whether it can detect smoke. (Unless, of course, pushing the "test" button on your device generates smoke not connected with electing a new Pope.)
The radioisotope may have decayed thereby exceeding its half-life by the "best if used by" date. You may just need fresher radioactive material - which means a new detector.
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says...

Chances are, the detector was made in 1995. Time to replace it with a new one.

If they're all the same age, yes.

The recommendation is the same - replace smoke detectors every ten years. They are the cheapest form of life insurance available.
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