Why Is My Smoke Alarm Beeping

The smoke alarm will chirp at a regular interval, about once every minute, when the battery is weak and needs to be replaced. Replace with a fresh 9 Volt battery. Quell Alarms are certified to be used with the models of batteries specified in the user manual. Once the battery is replaced, the beeping or chirping should stop. If the unit chirps at seemingly random times or at random intervals after replacing the battery, check for the following conditions:

1) The battery may be loose, or improperly installed.

Make sure the battery is fresh, and that it is snapped in all the way so it cannot be shaken loose. It’s possible that battery connections may not be making good contact with the battery. Disconnecting and re-connecting the battery once or twice will likely fix this condition.

2) The smoke alarm cover may be dirty.

Dust and insects can collect in the sensing chamber of the alarm. An accumulation of dust in the sensing chamber can cause the unit to chirp. It is good practice to clean the smoke alarm when you change the battery.

Cleaning smoke alarms:

Remove the alarm from the wall or ceiling and hold the unit on its side. There is a gap between the front cover and the back plate. Take a vacuum cleaner with a crevice tool and clean all around the gap area. Pay most attention to the sensor, which you will see in the gap area. The sensor looks like a small tin can with slots in it for ionisation alarms and a black cylinder for photoelectric alarms. This needs to be thoroughly cleaned since dust or insects may be caught in the sensor.

3) Reset the alarm.

Most current model smoke alarms have a processor that retains certain error conditions, such as a weak battery. The error condition should reset when the battery is replaced but sometimes it does not and must be manually reset to clear the error.

To reset an AC unit with a battery backup:

Turn off the power to the smoke alarm at the circuit breaker. Remove the smoke alarm from the mounting bracket and disconnect the power. Remove the battery. Press and hold the test button for at least 15 seconds. The unit may chirp or alarm for a few seconds before going silent. Reconnect the power and reinstall the battery. The unit will chirp once when the power is restored and should not chirp afterwards.”

To reset a DC only unit:

Remove the battery. Press and hold the test button for at least 15 seconds. The unit may chirp or alarm for a few seconds before going silent. Reinstall the battery. The unit will chirp when the battery is first connected but should not chirp afterwards.

4) An electrical condition may be causing the power to the unit to be interrupted. If the AC power to the unit is interrupted, the unit will chirp when the power is restored. This could be caused by power surges.

If the chirping seems to occur at about the same time in the evening or morning, it could be due to a surge created when the power company switches electrical grids to meet demand.

Check to see if the chirp (or chirping) occurs when something else in the house is turned on such as an exhaust or attic fan, a heater, etc. If the smoke alarm is connected to a circuit with such a device, the alarm may chirp when the other device is switched on. If this is the case and the device is plugged into a wall outlet, move it to another outlet on a different circuit. If it is a hardwired device, have an electrician investigate it.

5) Replace the alarm.

If none of these conditions exist and the suggestions don’t alleviate the symptom, the smoke alarm should be replaced. Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. Quell smoke alarms have a 10-year warranty from date of purchase. A date code stamped on the label attached to the back of the unit. If the unit is within warranty, please contact Quell on 1800 654 435 or email or send it to the following address for warranty repair or replacement:

Chubb Fire & Security Pty Ltd
Quell Division
Building F, Unit 1B
3-29 Birnie Avenue
Lidcombe, NSW 2141

Quell smoke alarms can be purchased from most major retailers nationally, several with online businesses.


Only Working Smoke Alarms Can Save Lives

On the 10-year anniversary of smoke alarm legislation in New South Wales, Quell reminds consumers about fire safety

SYDNEY, May 1 2016 – In recognition of the tenth anniversary of smoke alarm legislation requiring each building in which individuals sleep must possess a minimum of one smoke alarm, Quell is urging Australians to check their smoke alarms. Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) recommends residents replace smoke alarms every 10 years, which means alarms installed to ensure compliance with 2006 requirements may now need replacement. Quell, a registered trademark of Chubb Fire & Security Pty Ltd, a part of UTC Climate, Controls & Security, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX), has over 100 years of fire safety experience in Australia.

“We know Australians care about fire safety but if they don’t regularly check their fire alarms they could be at risk,” said David Laundry, national consumer manager, Quell. “We highly recommend that every household be armed with functioning fire alarms, fire extinguishers and fire blankets to ensure they are well prepared. We also recommend implementing a fire escape plan that identifies the quickest and safest way out of the residence.”

According to FRNSW data, 56 percent of fatal house fires between 2000 and 2014 occurred in homes where no smoke alarms were present. FRNSW also estimates that only 75 percent of houses have a working smoke alarm. The

sensitivity of smoke alarms decreases over time and most types of alarms need to be replaced every 10 years, even if the test button says the alarm is functioning correctly.

“An outdated or faulty smoke alarm may just be as dangerous as having no smoke alarm at all. Being unprotected from the possibility of a fire can double the chance of serious injury or death, which is a risk Quell hopes no family has to face,” Laundry concludes.

To know when your smoke alarm was manufactured, look for a batch number, which is typically printed near the battery compartment. A batch number of 2406 indicates that the product was manufactured in the 24th week of 2006. Quell alarms have a date of manufacture printed clearly on the base, while some manufacturers now place the expiry date on the smoke alarm.




Quell is one of the most respected names in Fire & Safety in the Australian consumer market. A division of Chubb, the world-renowned fire safety and security company with over 100 years' experience, Quell's commitment to quality and product innovation is unparalleled.