Smoke Alarms

Smoke Alarms Statistics In The UK

Despite the risks, a little over 12% of properties in England do not have a functional smoke alarm. Furthermore, over 33% of fire incidents in Britain occurred in homes without fire alarms of any kind. Smoke alarms (or detectors) work on the principle that smoke is an important element of fire. Hence, an early detection can prevent it from getting worse.

Choosing The Right Smoke Alarm Installers

It’s advisable to include fire safety as a major plan for your property, along with electrical wiring and security locks. To do this, you’ll need electricians who are experienced at installing fire alarms and building electricals.

Mittens Electrical is an engineering company with over 80

years of experience in providing electrical solutions and installing smoke alarms in buildings. Throughout the years, we have maintained a policy for service excellence and customer satisfaction. We are also BS5839 pt1:2013-compliant, as accredited by the UK ruling authorities on fire control. Therefore, our engineers are highly qualified to advise you. If you need expert consultation on fire security, contact our customer support team.

Types Of Smoke Alarms You Need To Know

There are four main types of smoke alarms currently in the market.

  • Ionisation
  • Optical (photo-electronic)
  • Heat
  • Combined

The one you select will depend on your building type, business activity or personal preference.

About Mittens Electrical


Happy clients mean we receive lots of positive word of mouth recommendations, which also means our partners’ reputations are under scrutiny when we act on their introductions. Our willingness to share our expertise and product knowledge within our partners’ organisations helps create a mutually beneficial working relationships and reciprocates that trust.

Our History

Established in 1935, a small family engineering firm has evolved into a successful multi million pound business, providing a wide range of products and services to local enterprises and large multi nationals alike. Every client enjoys and benefits from the same focused delivery approach ensuring that each and every job is completed to the highest standards


We pay attention to detail. Our proven industry-leading expertise and strong focus on safety, regulation and accreditation are all key factors when choosing Mittens Electrical Engineering. Clients often invite us to get involved early in their project design to help minimise costly design oversights.


With over 80 years experience of delivering quality service and solutions to our clients, we always seek to enhance not just our reputation, but our partners’ too. Service and quality underpin everything that we do. Experience counts.


This is usually the least expensive. Ionisation smoke alarms are very sensitive to small particles of smoke often formed by rapid flaming fires, such as wood and paper. It will often detect this type of fire before the smoke gets too thick. However, they are not quite as sensitive to slow burning and smouldering fires which emit greater quantities of smoke. We advise against installing them within or close to kitchen areas, as they can be overly sensitive.


Optical smoke alarms may be a bit more expensive, but highly effective at detecting greater particles of smoke from slow burning fires. For example, the smouldering upholstery with foam inside, and overheated PVC wiring. This means that they’ll be effective in plastic manufacturing plants. They are also somewhat less sensitive to rapidly flaming fires. Optical smoke alarms can be installed near (not in) kitchens, because they are not as prone to going off, as ionisation, when burning toast.

Heat Alarms

Heat alarms are straightforward. They detect increases in temperature from a fire. Unfortunately, they are not as sensitive to smoke. But this makes them valuable in the kitchen and other fire-use areas. They also cover a small area, so you’ll need to install multiple heat alarms in a large room.

Combined Optical Smoke And Heat Alarms

This combination of two types in one unit, increases the speed of fire detection while reducing false alarms. They can be installed in restaurants or manufacturing plants.

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Combined Smoke And Carbon Monoxide Alarms

This type of alarm combines both smoke and carbon monoxide detection in one ceiling-mounted unit. They are more cost effective and take up less space in the living room.

An Anatomy Of A Smoke Alarm

Each type looks similar and may be powered by a battery, main electricity or a combination of both, where the main is the key power and the battery is a back-up. At Mittens Electrical, we can interlink your smoke alarms, so if there’s a fire in one room, it can set off the alarms in other rooms. We can do this with the least cost, using radio to interlink the smoke alarms.

Most smoke alarms have a hush feature to stop them in event of a false alarm. The alarm notifies you when it’s being silenced by chirping or showing a red light- but an actual fire with lots of smoke will trigger it anyway.

Another useful technology is the ‘Sleep-Easy Function’- users can hush the alarm late at night if the low battery beep begins to go off. A typical smoke alarm will need to have its battery changed every 11 to 12 months. If you wish, our fire engineers can install alarms with 10-year inbuilt batteries, so that you don’t have to replace them every year.

Installing Smoke Alarms In Your Building

There’s a general rule for installing smoke alarms in your home:

  • Heat alarm: Kitchen and garage
  • Ionisation smoke alarms, combined (optical and heat): Landings
  • Optical smoke alarms, combined smoke alarms, and heat alarms: Bedrooms, hallway and sitting room

For commercial and industrial buildings, it’s a lot more complicated and will require an expert survey. When you call Mittens Electrical engineers, we first send a professional who’ll conduct an inspection of your premises and send a detailed recommendation of the type of smoke alarms you will need.

We offer obligation free consultancy for installation of smoke alarms.

Why Choose Mittens Electrical Engineers?

We have been in business since 1935 delivering excellent services. Here are some reasons our customers have stuck with us:

Highly experienced engineers

We hire the most skilled engineers with decades of experience. You are assured of quality services on any project we undertake.

Accredited engineers

Our electricians not only know their onions, but are well-respected in the industry. We have the backing of leading fire control authorities.

Comprehensively insured

Many people have incurred huge costs from on-site damage. We promise you, ‘safety first’ policy is the guiding principle of our installers. However, for added protection, we have a full insurance coverage on our customer’s projects.

Value for money

Our services come with high-quality assurance and affordable costs. Every customer is guaranteed value for their service.

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