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Smoke Alarms

Smoke Alarm

Get Alarmed! Tuscaloosa

Get Alarmed! Tuscaloosa is our free smoke alarm education and installation program. Through federal grants, we provide free smoke alarm inspections and installations for the citizens of Tuscaloosa. To schedule an appointment, contact the fire and life safety educator at 205-248-5420.

Smoke Alarm Facts


The Tuscaloosa Fire Rescue recommends that you install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home, including the basement. Smoke alarms are designed to wake you up if a fire starts while you are sleeping. Be sure your smoke alarms are near bedrooms and other sleeping areas in your home.


Battery-operated alarms should be tested once a month to make certain they are working.


Replace the batteries in your smoke alarm twice yearly. A good way to remember this is to change your batteries when you change clocks to start and end Daylight Saving Time. Install a new battery immediately if an alarm “chirps” to indicate a low battery.

A 10-year lithium battery smoke alarm does not need to have its battery changed. Replace smoke alarms that use extended-life lithium batteries when the alarm “chirps” or fails to respond to periodic testing. The batteries in these units can't be replaced.

False Alarms

Use the hush button to silence a false alarm. Never disconnect or remove the battery. If your smoke alarm does not have a hush button, use a magazine or kitchen towel to wave fresh air into the detection unit


Replace your smoke alarm every eight to ten years, even if it "beeps" when tested. The appliance is effective for no more than 10 years.

Do You Rent and Need a Smoke Alarm?

Whether you live in a rented house or apartment, your landlord is required to provide you with a working smoke alarm. Tenants are responsible for maintaining the smoke alarm(s) in good working condition. If your rental property does not have a smoke alarm, inform your landlord of this obligation. If you are having difficulty communicating with your landlord about this matter, contact the Fire Marshal's Office at 205-248-5420.

Smoke alarms save lives, but only if they are properly installed and functioning. Most fatalities happen in homes without working smoke alarms.