Smoke alarms provide essential protection for you and your family, and are required for new construction projects in most states. Depending on the nature and scale of your installation, the project may be appropriate for a handyman or other technician, or could require the skills of a licensed electrician. Your contractor or local fire department can help you select smoke detectors that are appropriate for your home, and advise you on effective placement for the highest level of protection.
Installing smoke alarms in residential settings is generally uncomplicated, since standard ceiling heights and the mounting requirements of typical smoke detectors do not usually require special skills or equipment. The size and design of your home will help determine the number of alarms needed, with national rates averaging $127 to install smoke alarms in a single-family home and $112 for apartments. Mounting smoke alarms at a business may be more complex, and costs $208 on average. The characteristics of the facility, the type of alarms installed, and any special scheduling required to accommodate the operations of the business may influence the price of the project.
Number of Alarms to Install
The size and layout of your home are important factors in determining how many smoke alarms are needed. Your installer can refer to local codes to plan for the number and placement of alarms for maximum effectiveness. Across the country, it typically costs $63 to install a single smoke alarm, $87 for two, $101 for three, $118 for four, $132 for five, $147 for six, $161 for seven, $178 for eight, $196 for nine, $219 for 10, and $304 to install more than 10 units. Installation procedures are generally consistent, though the accessibility of each mounting site in your project may affect overall project costs.
Power Source for Smoke Alarms
Laws in most states require that smoke alarms installed in new construction are hard wired to your home’s electrical system, though retrofitting a home with smoke detectors can be accomplished with battery operated alarms or a hard wired system. Battery operated units are simple to install, but require regular battery changes to ensure proper function. Fitting a home with battery-powered smoke alarms costs an average of $102, nationally. Hard wiring your smoke detectors minimizes ongoing maintenance and enables multiple alarms to sound simultaneously, but requires the services of an electrician to make wiring changes and connect new alarm units. The difficulty of running wires will influence the cost of your project, which averages $361.
Supplying Alarms and Materials
Smoke alarms are available at home centers, hardware stores, and other retail locations, making it convenient to select and purchase the supplies for your installation. If materials are provided, your installer will only need to charge you for his services, which average $84. If you prefer to have your installer supply needed materials and include them in the cost of your project, it may cost $193.
Planning for Smoke Alarm Installations
Installing new smoke alarms or replacing old units is an important step in protecting your home and family from a fire. The features of your home and the number and type of alarms installed will influence the cost of the project. Consult with your installer, electrician, or fire authorities to select smoke alarms and plan their placement as you prepare and budget for the job.