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Buying a smart smoke detector or carbon monoxide: Everything you need to know

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Do you want to buy a smart smoke detector or carbon monoxide detector? In this article, we’ll list everything you need to know about smart smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

You can equip your smart home with numerous sensors and detectors, including smart motion detectors  and smart cameras . In this article, we look at the smart smoke or carbon monoxide detector. These detectors can be placed anywhere in the house and ensure that you receive a notification when carbon monoxide, smoke or other dangerous substances are detected. In this article, we’ll list everything you need to know about smart smoke or carbon monoxide detectors.

What is a smart carbon monoxide and smart smoke detector?

A smart home must be optimally protected and that is why smart smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors cannot be missed. In most cases, the operation is the same as we are used to from the ‘dumb’ detectors. You hang them on the wall or ceiling and you will hear an alarm when dangerous substances are detected. The smart detector adds some extra functions to this. Depending on the device, you can expect a notification on your smartphone if something is detected, you can have the detector (itself) checked / tested, you can monitor the air quality and you can let other smart home devices communicate with the detector. You have smart smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors that work on batteries and you have models that can be connected to a 230 volt connection Nest Protect .

Placement and installation

Placement is very important for smart smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. For example, it is wise to place the detector near possible fires and ignition sources, but the kitchen is not recommended due to the many fumes. It is also recommended to hang the detectors close to sleeping areas, for extra security. It is best to equip each floor in the house with at least one smoke detector. The carbon monoxide alarm (if purchased separately) is best placed near ignition sources such as the boiler.

In addition, the exact placement in every room is important. Smoke moves in a certain way through the room and so the detector must be hung at the correct point on the wall or ceiling. Carbon monoxide moves through space in a different way, which in most cases requires a different position. Alarms that combine smoke and carbon monoxide require a position suitable for both smoke and carbon monoxide. In all cases, it is wise to read the manual for the smart smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors carefully and to follow the instructions for installation. If you have any doubts or want more information, the local fire brigade can provide you with extra tips.

As indicated above, smart smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors come in variants with and without batteries. If you go for a detector without batteries, the installation is more flexible, but you have to replace the batteries every so often. If you choose a detector that is connected to a 230 volt connection, you do not have to worry about batteries, but it is wise to read exactly how the detector should be placed and whether a junction box may need to be inserted before purchase.

What can a smart carbon monoxide or smoke detector do?

Smart smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors naturally have the main task of detecting smoke, carbon monoxide and in some cases other dangerous substances. The exact options differ per model. For example, you have detectors that combine carbon monoxide and smoke and you have detectors that combine smoke monitoring with, for example, a motion sensor or a light sensor. Almost all manufacturers of the smart detectors use new chips, sensors and techniques to detect fire, smoke, carbon monoxide and other substances much faster than traditional detectors. So they give you an alarm or warning more quickly.

Most smart smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms are self-monitoring and therefore require little maintenance. However, it is wise to perform a manual test every month to make sure that the detector is working. As soon as a toxic substance is detected, a smart detector immediately emits a loud alarm signal. A message is then also sent directly to your smartphone (whether or not via an app). In addition, most smart smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors give you an overview of the past days or weeks in which you can see whether hazardous substances have been found in the air to a greater or lesser extent and whether the detector has functioned correctly every day.

Smart smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms can often communicate with other smart home products as well. The Nest Protect example lights Philips Hue blink when alarm, and smoke all lights are turned on so you can find your way out quickly. The boiler is also powered directly by the Nest Thermostat disabled if there is an alarm. The exact operation with other smart home products depends on the product you buy, the protocols that are supported and the possibilities offered by the manufacturer of the product. Many manufacturers market closed systems, which means that you can buy cameras, smoke detectors, sensors and other products of the same brand, but they can only communicate together.

Before you buy a smart smoke detector and / or carbon monoxide detector, it is important to find out which other smart home devices the detector is compatible with. There are several companies that sell smart home equipment such as detectors and sensors, but communication between these devices is often only possible if the sensor is of the same brand as the other equipment. That is also the reason that many companies offer complete packages; with detectors, sensors, thermostats, sockets and much more. It is therefore not self-evident that a sensor communicates with your smart lighting.

In addition, with a complete system, it is also more convenient if you get detectors and sensors from one company, because these sensors often appear in one app on your phone. For example, various companies offer a complete smart alarm system that can be operated with one app. However, this is not a must when you buy detectors and sensors that have to be set once and then communicate with your lighting, thermostat, alarm etc. It is therefore important that you know with which other products (or protocols ) the detectors and sensors can communicate. Some companies offer adapters and contacts with which ‘dumb’ devices such as lamps and blinds can be made ‘smart’ and thus react to the relevant sensors and detectors.

 

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