It’s imperative to have one or more fire alarm systems installed around the house, including your garage. But what’s the best system to install for a garage? Is it a smoke detector or something else?
A smoke detector won’t be very effective in the garage because of temperature swings and car exhaust. It’s actually better to have a smoke detector in a room connected to the garage. Consider buying a heat detector instead. It will alert you when there’s a possible fire in the garage.
Whichever safety system you choose to use, know that you need to install a detector of some sort in your garage. Not to worry, as we’ll describe some other detectors that you can have installed in your garage and why they’re better than the smoke detector.
Is It Necessary to Have a Smoke Detector in the Garage?
It is necessary to have a system to signal you in case of a fire in critical areas around your house, including the garage. However, you don’t need an actual smoke detector in the garage, although you can place it there for added security.
The best security devices to place in the garage are heat detectors and carbon monoxide detectors, as they provide more accurate warnings and alarms than smoke detectors.
Instead of placing a smoke detector in your garage, you can install it in rooms that have shared walls, floors, or doors with the garage.
Is a Smoke Detector in the Garage Useful?
A smoke detector is generally meant to be useful wherever you put it, but that might not be the case if you place it in the garage.
For one, the temperature in a garage might be colder or warmer than the average temperature range that the smoke detector has been programmed for.
Once it gets a little warmer in the garage, the smoke alarm might go off. You wouldn’t want to have to deal with so many false alarms.
Also, exhaust fumes from cars can unnecessarily trigger the alarm, which can end up being a nuisance to you. In fact, if the smoke detector goes off every time there’s excessive dust or car exhaust fumes in the area – which would happen all the time – its internal sensor might get damaged.
When this happens, the smoke detector won’t be able to operate effectively.
This is why it’s better to have either a heat detector or carbon monoxide detector in the garage. If you’d still like to have the smoke detector around your garage, a connecting room would be a better spot for it.
Heat Detector VS Smoke Detector
Before we talk about how a heat detector is better than a smoke detector, let’s clarify some confusion. Many people think these two are the same device, but that’s not the case.
Being able to tell the difference will help you determine which one is better for your garage.
A smoke detector is designed to protect the environment and everyone in it by creating an alarm when smoke starts to build up in the area.
This is very important because it gives occupants the opportunity to react and escape the adverse effects of smoke in a fire outbreak.
Heat detectors, on the other hand, go off when the temperature in the area becomes too high, warning people that there’s a possible fire in the area.
A heat detector can sometimes be used to activate fire sprinklers and other systems put in place to suppress a fire.
Should You Get a Heat Detector or a Smoke Detector?
If you have to choose between having a smoke detector or a heat detector in your garage, the heat detector would be best.
This is because a heat detector doesn’t react to every temperature change or other contaminants in the area, unlike a smoke detector.
The heat detector will only alert you to uncharacteristic conditions that could cause damage to the environment or harm you and the people around you.
You could call a heat detector the more mature version of the smoke detector.
A heat detector won’t go off when car exhaust fumes are in the garage. The bottom line is that you won’t have to worry about false alarms with a heat detector in your garage.
Another thing that makes the heat detector better than a smoke detector is that you can connect it to other safety systems in the house for effective protection.
For example, the alarm from the heat detector can trigger the fire sprinkler in your house or any other safety systems that you’ve installed in and around your garage.
You can be sure that the heat detector is a better safety or security system for your garage.
Should You Have a Carbon Monoxide Detector in the Garage?
It would be best if you also considered having a carbon monoxide detector in your garage. This safety system will alert you when there’s a gas buildup in the garage.
Gas leakage is silent yet very deadly. Most times, people don’t even realize that there’s a gas leak somewhere until it’s very late.
And since carbon monoxide can leak into other parts of the home, it isn’t safe to be without a detector in your house.
Once you have this detector installed in your garage, you’ll always be informed when there’s a leakage.
Some types of CO detectors can be connected to other alarm systems in the house to alert everyone in the area of high carbon monoxide levels.
Other Safety Tips for Your Garage
Remember that a lot goes on in the garage. While it’s important to have detectors installed there, it’s also important for you to practice general safety tips to prevent accidents.
Here are some of the things you can do to ensure that your garage remains as accident-free as possible:
- Store all harmful materials and chemicals away, preferably in a locked shed. Other items that can’t be locked away should be kept out of reach of people who aren’t qualified to handle them.
- Always clean up the garage after working there. Get rid of debris, spills, and dust. Sometimes excessive dust in the area can set off a smoke detector if you have one, so it’s better to clear the area of dust.
- Get rid of old paints and other items that contain chemicals, such as solvents, spray paint cans, and so on.
- Ensure your garage has adequate lighting. That way, things will be easier to find, and you can easily find your way around the area.
- Besides having a smoke, heat, or CO detector in the garage, another safety item you should invest in is a fire extinguisher. Once you have that, ensure everyone in your home learns how to use it if you’re not around when something happens.
- Replace outdated and old electrical cords. Keeping old cords like this in your garage can lead to fire outbreaks and even a shock hazard. You wouldn’t want any of that.