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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)

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Honestly didn't know of a difference.. but read through that and thought this was interesting:

In tests, ionization alarms will typically respond about 30 to 90 seconds faster to “fast-flame” fires than photoelectric smoke alarms. However, in smoldering fires ionization alarms respond an average of 15 to 50 minutes slower than photoelectric alarms.
Sounds like we need COMBO units!! :laughing:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Sounds like we need COMBO units!! :laughing:
Actually if you read the whole article and even go to the study links provided the combo units are also out.

Further, the IAFF position specifically states that combination type alarms are not acceptable.
International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) is the largest firefighters union in the US and Canada with nearly 300,000 members.
 

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Easy solution:

Install photoelectrics in bedrooms, living areas with wood-burning stoves/fireplaces or other areas where a smoldering type fire is most likely to get started.

Install ionization type in areas adjacent to kitchens or any area where a fast-flaming (trash can, grease on stove) type of fire is likely to start.

That gives the best coverage for the least cost IMHO.

I will have both types in the house by the time I am done.
 

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Easy solution:

Install photoelectrics in bedrooms, living areas with wood-burning stoves/fireplaces or other areas where a smoldering type fire is most likely to get started.

Install ionization type in areas adjacent to kitchens or any area where a fast-flaming (trash can, grease on stove) type of fire is likely to start.

That gives the best coverage for the least cost IMHO.

I will have both types in the house by the time I am done.
They also make a combo unit for about $30. Now they just need to introduce a photo/ion/CO combo.
 

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They also make a combo unit for about $30. Now they just need to introduce a photo/ion/CO combo.
I like the idea of combo alarms, but this:

Actually if you read the whole article and even go to the study links provided the combo units are also out.

Quote:
Further, the IAFF position specifically states that combination type alarms are not acceptable.
International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) is the largest firefighters union in the US and Canada with nearly 300,000 members.
...has given me pause to reconsider....have you had any experience with the combo units, and how do they work out for you?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
This I feel is an important discussion. Especially for the resi electricians. I've had a discussion with an electrician renter in one of the condo units. Anyway he is type that just collects his pay on Friday and is not interested in learning I think.

Here is a bit from the first link in my post...

The International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) is the largest firefighters union in the US and Canada with nearly 300,000 members. In 2008, the IAFF adopted an official position recommending that only photoelectric smoke alarms be installed. The IAFF position also commits the organization to working for changes in the law and model codes to require photoelectric technology alarms. Further, the IAFF position specifically states that combination type alarms are not acceptable. In July, 2010, the City of Albany, California became the first city in California to require photoelectric smoke alarms in new construction and remodels. Followed in late 2010 by Palo Alto, CA and Orange, CA that enacted ordinances requiring photoelectric technology alarms. In January 2011, the City of Sebastopol, CA enacted an ordinance requiring photoelectric technology. A number of cities in Ohio have enacted similar ordinances. The North Eastern Ohio Fire Chiefs organization has a very strong photoelectric only position.

In 2011, the California Real Estate Inspection Association (CREIA) became the first home inspection organization in the world to take a stand when CREIA adopted a position mirroring the IAFF position. At this time, Vermont, Massachusetts, Maine and Iowa have laws on the books that require photoelectric technology smoke alarms in residential construction. Similar action is under consideration in several states and in New York City. The Northern Territory in Australia recently adopted a photoelectric technology law.
It would be interesting if someone from one of the above places would chime in.

To further your education here is part of the IAFF post on their web site...
October 4, 2010 –President Barack Obama has proclaimed October 3 – 9, 2010 as Fire Prevention Week. Many IAFF affiliates across the United States will be conducting fire safety education campaigns utilizing the theme for this year’s event “Smoke Alarms: A Sound You can Live With!”

Smoke alarms can and do mean the difference between life and death in a fire. But only if they are present, in working order and equally important, only if the correct alarm is installed.

Citizens must upgrade their smoke alarms to make sure their homes are equipped with photoelectric smoke alarms,” says IAFF General President Harold Schaitberger said. “Using better smoke alarms will drastically reduce the loss of life among fire fighters and citizens because it will mean fires will be found earlier, resulting in earlier response.”

It is the position of the IAFF that federal, state and provincial officials should require that all relevant building standards and codes developed in the United States and Canada include a mandate for the use of photoelectric smoke alarms. Research has clearly demonstrated that photoelectric smoke alarms are more effective at warning people of smoke from smoldering fires than ionization smoke alarms.

Fires that occur at night when everyone is asleep, resulting in a delayed discovery of a fire, tend to be smoldering fires – many caused by smoking materials. Smoldering fires are the leading cause of fire fatalities and photoelectric alarms detect these fires. With earlier warning, people have more time to escape a burning structure and enable a quicker call to the fire department.

Photoelectric smoke alarms contain a light source and a light-sensitive electric cell. Smoke entering the alarm deflects light onto the light-sensitive electric cell, triggering the alarm. These alarms are more sensitive to large particles given off during smoldering fires – the kind of fires that occur at night when people are asleep. They are also more sensitive to smoke involving the burning of plastic materials as well as to smoke that has drifted to other areas from the point of the fire origin.

Ionization smoke alarms have a small amount of radioactive material, and establish a small electric current between two metal plates, which sound an alarm when disrupted by smoke entering the chamber. These alarms are more sensitive to presence of extremely small particles of smoke that are typical of flaming fires. But the technology leads to a delayed warning for the smoldering fire. That can lead to greater loss of life among people in a burning structure and fire fighters, who are faced with a more developed fire. A delayed warning during a smoldering fire, especially at night, can incapacitate people who are sleeping and lead to death as fire spreads.
I actually think this is so important that the subject line should be changed (drop California) and sticky it somewhere.

Like Frunk I've never thought much of it but when I was about to replace a few I researched the stuff.
 

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It would be interesting if someone from one of the above places would chime in.
Sure

Right now we're 120V w BBu/9V Photo sm / co

I use a lot of brk sc701bv combo units

I'm told they're top of the line, state likes them, etc

additionally, the state of VT now wants more detection locations, AND they're only good for 10 yrs tops

My question to 'the powers that be' is, wouldn't a little safety proliferation trump this full boat approach....?


~CS~
 

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I suppose i should add that if the fire alarm or ocpd manufacturers invent something, Vermont will want it first

The problem obviously being blind faith and the law of unintended consequences

Firemen's orginizational brass not being electricians being a rather grand example

~CS~
 

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This I feel is an important discussion. Especially for the resi electricians. I've had a discussion with an electrician renter in one of the condo units. Anyway he is type that just collects his pay on Friday and is not interested in learning I think.

Here is a bit from the first link in my post...



It would be interesting if someone from one of the above places would chime in.

To further your education here is part of the IAFF post on their web site...


I actually think this is so important that the subject line should be changed (drop California) and sticky it somewhere.

Like Frunk I've never thought much of it but when I was about to replace a few I researched the stuff.
I agree and consider it done. :thumbup:

I for one am surprised to hear the number of places going photoelectric-only and that the combo units are not recommended...but I'd still like to see some independent documentation on why that is so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I consider the IAFF (firemen), the ones pushing Photoelectric, to be independent.

I'm sure they are making no financial gain whatsoever and I believe they want to save lives. Not sure what other motive they would have.
 

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New construction in MA requires Photoelectric type. If a smoke/co is used it is a photo with voice. All need battery back up. When there is an older house there are many different rules and usually some combination of photo and ionization type are required. Really is a pita since there are 4 or 5 different classifications for one and two family dwellings.
 

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Great comments from the IAFF and CREIA on this thread!
Our report, 'Can Australian and U.S. Smoke Alarm Standards Be Trusted?' explains the root cause of the problem.
Read/download the free report here:
www.SmokeAlarmWarning.org/standards.html

. . . and please spread the word.

Thank you.
Adrian Butler
The World Fire Safety Foundation
Chairman, Co-Founder, Former Fire Fighter
Wooloweyah, NSW Australia
 

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New construction in MA requires Photoelectric type. If a smoke/co is used it is a photo with voice. All need battery back up. When there is an older house there are many different rules and usually some combination of photo and ionization type are required. Really is a pita since there are 4 or 5 different classifications for one and two family dwellings.

There's a fair amount of confusion. I've sat in a couple fire prevention offices and discussed (explained :whistling2:) the regulations to them. The info's out there, some people don't seem too interested in finding it.
 

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Great comments from the IAFF and CREIA on this thread!
Our report, 'Can Australian and U.S. Smoke Alarm Standards Be Trusted?' explains the root cause of the problem.
Read/download the free report here:
www.SmokeAlarmWarning.org/standards.html

. . . and please spread the word.

Thank you.
Adrian Butler
The World Fire Safety Foundation
Chairman, Co-Founder, Former Fire Fighter
Wooloweyah, NSW Australia
Welcome Adrian

while i'll agree with the report you've posted, overall efficacy becomes a moot point w/o enforcement of some sort, be it the insurance industry or what is commonly referred to as nanny state.

for ex., i'm willing to wager 10% of my local area is compliant , with maybe 40-50% of dwelling unit owners who have zero protection

Like Ron White says, you can't fix stupid, and i'm fairly sure we can't legislate it out of our existence either

~CS~
 

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