Maryland’s Updated Smoke Alarm Law – What you need to know
The new law will go into effect on January 1, 2018. The law requires the replacement of battery-only operated smoke alarms with sealed 10-year lithium-ion battery smoke alarms with a silence/hush feature. The intent of the new Smoke Alarm Law is to transition away from 9-volt battery-operated smoke alarms in an effort to achieve more reliable smoke alarm coverage possible in older dwellings. This law effects smoke alarms that are battery-operated and presently exist by code or locations where there are no smoke alarms present. It is never acceptable to remove required hard-wired smoke alarms and replace them with any type of battery-only operated devices. Maryland’s Smoke Alarm Law also requires the replacement of all smoke alarms 10 years from the manufacturers date on the back of the alarm, applying to both hard-wired and battery-operated smoke alarms. If the manufacturers date cannot be found, the alarm is most-likely outdated and needs to be replaced.
To clarify, 9-volt smoke alarms that have reached a 10-year life span (since date of manufacture) should be replaced with new 10-year lithium-ion battery smoke alarms. Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of your home. As a reminder, smoke alarms in rental properties are the responsibility of the property owner or management.
For more information, see the attached link from the Maryland Office of the State fire marshal