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#62657 - 02/23/06 06:39 AM smokes and carbons interwired  
russ m  Offline
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 169
Does anybody know if it's allowed or not allowed to interwire smokes with carbonmonoxide detectors when their indepedant of each other.

Aparently our fire department doesn't like the practice of inter wiring the two because on a call they don't know if it a fire/smoke problem or a co problem. Uless of course it's very obvious, but thats not allways the case.

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#62658 - 02/23/06 08:18 AM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
Larry Fine  Offline
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 693
Richmond, VA
I know of no such prohibition, and either condition means get out of the house. Whether the reason is CO or smoke (a) will make itself obvious, and (b) the fire dept. can figure it out when they arrive.

Larry Fine
Fine Electric Co.

#62659 - 02/23/06 08:40 AM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
JCooper  Offline
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 228
Kendall Park, NJ USA
In the town I am a firefighter in they are building a new apartment complex where they are using combination interconnected smoke/CO detectors. Usually if it is a smoke alarm there will be some sort of indicator on the head that was activated and CO alarms normally have an alarm indicator, and both work well as long as the homeowner doesn't reset them. It can be more of a bother to the homeowner if they reset because if we don't smell any smoke and there are no readings on our CO detector then they have to wait and see if they have a faulty head. About 80% of our CO alarm calls are just for low battery, they must think the single chirp every 5 minutes or so is an alarm.

#62660 - 02/23/06 09:01 AM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
mshaw  Offline
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 44
Fairborn, Oh, USA
They must be UL rated to be used togather. Mixing life safety compomets can cause problems if the are not UL listed to use togather in a system.

#62661 - 02/23/06 02:16 PM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
russ m  Offline
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 169
I'll have to ask the fire chief what type of detector it was. (stand alone or combo) Maybe I'll have to check it out myself to be sure.
I'll also check out the UL listings.

Thanks Russ

#62662 - 02/23/06 05:38 PM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
earlydean  Offline
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 751
Griswold, CT, USA
In my state it is allowed to interconnect smokes and CO detectors. The manufacturer's instructions would have to be followed. (not all brands can be tied together)


#62663 - 02/23/06 05:59 PM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
Rewired  Offline
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 558
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
There are smoke / co detectors on the market (At least in Canada) that are interconnectable and not only sound an alarm but Announce both in English and French the "Origin " of the alarm ( Fire or Carbon Monoxide). They also have battery back-up....
If I am not mistaken they are made by "Kidde" which is the Pyrene corp..


#62664 - 02/23/06 06:51 PM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
russ m  Offline
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 169
In this case the smoke's and co's were separate units.

[This message has been edited by russ m (edited 02-23-2006).]

#62665 - 02/23/06 08:33 PM Re: smokes and carbons interwired  
renosteinke  Offline
Cat Servant
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Blue Collar Country
There are reasons that the alarm trade is usually separate from the electrical trade; issues like these are part of the reason.

As far as the NEC is concerned, there is no requirement for smokes to be on a dedicated circuit; other things can be on the circuit, and that would include CO detectors. Indeed there are many units out there that alarm to both conditions.
The building codes, however, stipulate that one smoke alarm will make all alarms sound; this is easiest done by having them on a separate circuits.

The "UL restrictions" referred to earlier would ONLY apply to a central-station alarm system- and not to your usual houshold smoke (or CO) alarms.

It is pretty well established where you should use, and mount, smoke alarms. Such is not the case with CO alarms. There is no reason to assume that the smoke alarm location is a good place for the CO detector.

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