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How to Wire Smoke Detectors in a Hardwired System

Having a safe home is everyone’s dream, but too many times, that dream goes up in flames and the only thing left is ashes.

Every residential building should have smoke detectors installed in them. Often, this makes the difference between a home gutted down by fire and one that was saved just before the fire could start.

image - How to Wire Smoke Detectors in a Hardwired System
How to Wire Smoke Detectors in a Hardwired System

Fires can start really quietly and can even stay undetected until it is too late to do anything, this is why you need smoke detectors to keep your family and property safe at all times.

For proper smoke detector installation, contact your electrician in Melbourne for a professional job that meets the standards.

Smoke detectors are lifesavers; every home should have them. However, smoke detectors will only work when they have electrical charges in them on a continuous basis.

These charges could be from batteries or could be hardwired into your home’s electrical system.

Too often, you could have smoke detectors installed, but they can fail because of dead batteries.

It is considered best practice to change your smoke detector’s batteries at least every six months, but it is even better and safer to have one that is hardwired into your home electrical system as this will ensure that you will never be left without a working smoke detector.

Now, let us consider what a hardwired smoke detector?

What does it even mean when people say “hardwired?” Well, when a device is hardwired, it simply means that the device is directly connected to your home’s electrical circuits and it is not just plugged into an electrical outlet in your home or running off batteries.

A hardwired smoke detector can look like a battery-powered smoke detector, especially when it is up on your ceiling or your wall.

The difference between the both is that for hardwired smoke detectors, their continuous electrical current limits or reduces any chances of failing.

You should also know that in the case of a blackout (which almost never happens) or power failure, hardwired smoke detectors have their back-up battery onboard to ensure that they continue to work.

So with hardwired smoke detectors, you have a fail-safe system.

So, how do you wire smoke detectors in a hardwired system?

These are the steps to take to wire a smoke detector in a hardwired system.

Read on.

Note: only a trusted electrician should do this.

Step 1: Turn off Power

The electrician has to check or decide which of the existing circuit the smoke detectors is going to be wired into. The next thing to do is to immediately turn off the power supply to that particular circuit.

You know the ground rule when working with electricity, – safety first!

Step 2: Drill the Holes

Now, the electrician will use a stud finder to find the wall stud or the ceiling beam as the location for the smoke detector to be installed.

Your electrical box is a great guide to use, so now, the hole is bored between the wall studs accurately.

Making use of a level will ensure that the outline of the box is also level and accurate.

Then, the electrician will bore an archetype hole halfway in the outline for the electrical box, then he or she will then cut around the pilot hole.

The electrical box should just fit, – not tight and not loose.

If you are having more than one smoke detector installed, then the electrician will repeat this process for all the units.

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Step 3: Extend the Wire

Now, from the power source, he or she will then extend or run the wire to the location of the smoke detector. Your power source can include a wall switch, an already existing wall outlet, or a circuit breaker panel.

You need a good amount of cable for this, the cable will be left running through the hole in the drywall.

This makes your installation easier, and then your electrician will now trim or clip the wire to the proper length needed when installing a hardwired smoke detector.

If you are installing multiple smoke detectors, you will need more wire cables.

Step 4: Bind the Wires to the Electrical Boxes

At the location of each of the boxes, an 8-inch wire will extend from each. Your electrician will now remove the insulation wrap from the wire carefully using a cable stripper.

The wires will be extended and clamped to the electrical boxes we have.

Step 5: Fasten the Electrical Boxes

Now, it’s time to secure your electrical box in the drywall opening. At every location of the smoke detector, your electrician will feed the circuit wires through the detector’s mounting plate and line up the screw holes on it to the hole you have in the electrical box.

The electrician will now use the screws to fasten the smoke detector in place.

Step 6: Wire your Smoke Detector and put everything together

The smoke detector has two parts: the alarm and the wires that poke out after it after it has been connected. The electrician now connects the wiring harness with the white, red, and black wires coming through the closest electrical box.

When the smoke detectors have been wired, the electrician will attach the mounting plate to the electrical box with screws, then the wire harness will be attached behind the smoke alarm. You’re almost good to go!

Step 7: Connect to the Circuit

Now, the electrician will join the wires to the circuit and link the smoke detector cable to the circuit.

Now that the wires have been joined, you can restore power to the circuit and follow the setup steps for your new hardwired smoke detector.

If any issues do proceed, make sure to contact an emergency electrician in Melbourne.