How Does A Smoke Detector Work?

Smoke detectors come in myriad of shapes and sizes. In addition, different smoke detectors operate by different means. The most basic kind of smoke detector is a photoelectric one. This kind of detector works much in the same way as a motion sensor. The sensor in the detector senses when light is being obscured, namely from smoke. When the sensor is triggered, the alarm sounds. While this method of detection works, it is not ultimately the most sensitive.

The second kind smoke detector is an ionization detector. The science behind them is a little complicated, but the basic premise is this: Within the detector, there is an ionization chamber which has an electrical current. When smoke from the environment around the detector is introduced into the ionization chamber, it causes the current to be interrupted, trigging the alarm. Unlike the photoelectric detector, this ionization detector is much more sensitive, and it is therefore the much more common.

Crossfire uses both kinds of sensors in our smoke detectors. The ionization chambers in our smoke detectors allow smoke to enter from all 360 degrees. In addition, the photoelectric chamber is fully light baffled and possesses a screen to prevent insects from entering it. We didn’t just stop there when developing our state-of-the-art smoke detectors, however. Crossfire smoke detectors also communicate with each other wirelessly, which means that if one goes off then they all go off. The combination of these technologies makes our smoke detectors the ideal choice for today’s modern home.


Develop a Fire Escape Plan Today

Having an escape plan in place for your family can be the difference between life and death in the event a fire. Ever a useful resource, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has some great recommendations for how to create an escape plan for you and your family.

FEMA advises creating a map of your home with your family. With that map, they recommend that you work together to identify two ways out of every room. In the event of a fire, having multiple ways to exit is especially important, as any exit could potentially be blocked by fire or thick smoke. If you have small children, they recommend that you role play with them so that they know exactly how to act and behave in the event of an emergency.

After you’ve identified potential exits in the event of a fire, it’s important that you and your family establish an agreed-upon meeting place outside of the home. This will be vitally important for taking a headcount and verifying that everyone has escaped the emergency successfully. There’s one thing that should never be a part of your escape plan: reentering your home. Once you’re out, stay out. Fires evolve quickly, and although you were able to escape once, you might not be so lucky again.

Of course, an escape plan is only as good as your ability to be alerted in the event of a fire emergency within your home. Crossfire’s state-of-the-art smoke detectors offer homeowners unparalleled protection in the even of a fire. Their dual ionization / photoelectric sensors are incredibly sensitive, and Crossfire smoke detectors communicate with each other wirelessly to alert your entire home to a danger in any one part.


Be Careful With That Extra Virgin Olive Oil!

Who doesn’t love extra virgin olive oil? It’s delicious, it’s nutritious, and it’s great on just about anything! However, did you know that extra virgin olive oil (or EVOO) could be a fire hazard in your kitchen? Unlike some other cooking oils, EVOO has a relatively low smoke point. This is the temperature at which, as you might guess, the oil begins to smoke. When the oil begins to smoke, this signals that the oil is breaking down. When this happens, it doesn’t only cause your food to taste bad, it can also impart dangerous chemicals into your food. Even worse, if the oil is allowed to smoke for an extended period of time it can ignite, causing a dangerous grease fire.

Because of this, you should avoid using EVOO for any applications that involve high heat. This includes searing meat and fish, as well as any instance when you might be frying something at a high temperature. Instead, you’ll want to use another cooking oil, such as grapeseed oil, which has a higher smoke point. Aside from reducing the risk of a kitchen fire, a neutral-tasting oil like grapeseed oil will also keep the flavors in your cooking undiluted.

Even if you’re using the right cooking oil, grease fires can happen sometimes. If this ever happens to you, be sure that you know how to handle the situation! Immediately turn off the heat, and don’t move the pan. Moving the pan might cause you to inadvertently spread burning oil all over your kitchen. Instead, cover the pan with a metal lid (not glass, as it will break). Doing so will deprive the grease fire of oxygen, causing it to extinguish.


A Smoke Detector Saves More Lives

Recently, a family in Everett, WA, learned the life-or-death importance of having a working smoke detector in one’s home. According to KIRO, Catherine Allen was the victim of a rude awakening, when she awoke to discover that her home was filled with huge fires and billowing smoke. It wasn’t the heat of the fires or the acridness of the smoke that woke her up, though; it was the sound of her home’s functioning smoke detector. Because the home’s smoke detector did its job, Catherine and the rest of her family were able to escape the blaze, which consumed their entire home, with their lives.

While smoke detectors are still useful when we’re up and about in our homes and places of business, they’re particularly useful when we’re not. While sleeping, we become oblivious to the outside world and the things that are happening right around us. Most often, those things are perfectly benign, but sometimes they’re not. A working smoke detector can pull us out of dreamland and plant us back in reality, where we can work quickly to save our own lives and the lives of people around us.

Crossfire’s top-of-the-line smoke detectors offer unparalleled protection for you and your family. In addition to utilizing two forms of smoke detection for extra sensitivity, our alarms sound at 100 decibels and communicate with each other wirelessly so that a problem in one part of your home does not go unnoticed in another.


A Brief History of the Smoke Detector

The smoke detector has been around for a long time now, but it hasn’t always been the tiny little gadget that it is today. In fact, the first smoke detector was invented in 1890 by Francis Thomas Upton, an associate of Thomas Edison, inventor of the light bulb. Upton’s smoke detector didn’t work in the same way that modern smoke detectors work, however. Conceived for use in abandoned buildings, the smoke detector was actually more of a temperature detector. It used a thermometer to monitor the ambient temperature around the detector and sounded an alarm when it reached a pre-determined temperature.

This was the standard until 1930. Walter Jaeger invented what you would know as the modern smoke detector. Believe it or not, the technology was discovered somewhat by accident. He had been working on a sensor that would detect the presence of poisonous gasses, however the contraption didn’t work as he would have liked. However, when he lit and then smoked a cigarette near the contraption, he noticed that it responded to the smoke coming from the cigarette. Thus, the modern ionization detector was born.

From here, the advertisers and marketers took over, successfully selling the population on the idea of prevention. As the smoke detector gained popularity, more competition entered the market and the detector was continually refined. That leads us to today, when Crossfire’s state-of-the-art smoke detectors are the best in class. They combine the finest sensors with wireless technology that ensures that a fire in one part of your home doesn’t go unnoticed in another.