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Smoke detector false alarms
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Hi, I have recently been asked about false alarms by hardwired smoke detectors. Please take all alarms seriously. When I inspected the alarms of one Mueller resident home (I was a liscenced firealarm intalation superintendant in the 1980s) I found a typical issue. There was a small insect, June bug) in one device. Since these alarms use an internal photo sensitive light beam to detect smallparticles such as smoke, the alarm was sounding off intermitantly. Dust and cobwebs are often the culprit. The soultion is removing the cover and cleaning the interior of the device by using a dust buster or vacuuming cleaner, fine bristled paint brush or synthetic broom. These devices are designed to detect very small particles and with all of the construction taking place in Mueller, dust seeps in through the smallest cracks. Also, The City of Austin has a program by which they will furnish free smoke detectors to any resudent who calls Clara O'Rourke at 512-445-3548. In a 2 or 3 bedroom home even the cheapest First Alert smoke detectors can run into more than a few dollars at $20-$30 each X 5 so that all rooms and hallways are covered. Please be careful on stepladders and having someone to steady the ladder while the person is servicing the alarm is advised. Smoke detectors can be annoying but they are an essential life saving element and are required by law in all homes.

You may get a voicemail when you call Ms O'Rourke as I did but I encourage you to leave a message, obtain the alarms either free from the city or purchased at Home Depot. Be careful, take steps and protect yourself and your family so as not to make an ash of yourself.
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