Changing the batteries in a smoke alarm / detector :


Many a times, when homeowners hear a short and slow beeping sound from the smoke alarm, they assume it is damaged or requires an electrician to do repairs. But most often, the problem is a simple battery change.
Below are steps to follow to identify that the smoke alarm requires a battery change.

Step 1: The type of smoke alarm:

Before you go ahead and change or remove anything from your smoke alarm, you must know what type of smoke alarm it is: There are two types of smoke alarms:
  1. Battery powered smoke alarms- which solely run on battery
  2. Hard-Wired smoke alarms- which are powered by electricity (but they also have a back-up battery for when there is a power outages)

Step 2: Indication of a flat battery:

When your smoke alarm requires a change of batteries, it will give off short beeps/ a chirp-like sound in a constant interval of 30 or 60 seconds. This indicates a flat battery. This indicator applies to both a battery powered smoke alarm and Hard-wired smoke alarm.

Step 3: Remove cover of Smoke Alarm

Some smoke alarm covers are twistable and easy to take off, while others require a screw-driver to remove.

Step 4: Replace Battery

Take out the old batteries and replace with new batteries. Once replaced, slowly twist back/screw back the cover.

Step 5: Test

Locate the test button on your smoke alarm and test to see if the new batteries work. If they do not, check to ensure that batteries are placed properly and retry.

In some cases, the above five (5) steps will not work. This means that you will need to replace the smoke alarm.


Pritchard, L (2020) How often should smoke alarm batteries be changed, Retrieved from

Wallender, L (2021) How to Change a battery in a smoke detector, Retrieved from

bigoneChanging the batteries in a smoke alarm / detector :
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