The fire dept checks the smokes if it is comercial. Residential the electrical inspector checks them.
For testing residential ones I see them push the button and listen for the other smokes beeping. They will ask if they are all interconected and what circuit they are on. Sometimes the look for a breaker lock. Maybe they look to see if the power light is on.
In a recent discussion with a local fire chief(Massachusetts), he said he doesn't use the "aerosol smoke test" products anymore and tests each unit with the test button on the unit.
The instructions that come with the detectors I use say to test by pushing the test button. They further state that if an aerosol test product is used, be certain to use one that has been Listed to Underwriters Labortories, Inc. Safety Standards, and use only as directed.
It further states that improper use of a UL listed aerosol product or use of a nonlisted aerosol product voids warranty and also may affect the sensitivity of the smoke detector.
No wonder he only uses the test button anymore.
The above would apply to residential AC/DC residential smoke detectors...
Anyone ever seen this? Smoke candle test. I have and only once for duct detectors. Aerosol wouldnt make it down the duct. We had to put it near the return air grate and reset the system and do it at all of the other DD's to test if the sample tubes were working properly.
And, yep, its true, you can destroy a smoke by spraying the stuff too close. I have also had inspectors who are OK with just the test button (if it has one, most addressable systems don't), but an equal amount of those who want to see full operation at each device, and want to test supervision, by pulling wires out, with the right address called back to them.
Mark Heller "Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason