If you own a home that was built before 1975, there are specific laws in MA when it comes to the installation of smoke detectors. As of December 1, 2016, there is an important change to this law. Here’s what you need to know.

An Overview of the Law in MA

Smoke detectors are required in all residential properties  in Massachusetts. For homes built before 1975, smoke detectors are required on every living level, at the bottom of each staircase, and outside each sleeping area. Smoke detectors must be ionization and photoelectric detectors, except within 20 feet of kitchens and baths. In that case, they must be photoelectric-only. Photoelectric detectors are less prone to false alarms from bathroom steam and kitchen fumes.

Changes to MA Smoke Detector Law in 2016

smoke-detectors-in-maAs of December 1, 2016, smoke detectors in homes built before 1975 must have a 10-year battery. At your local hardware store, you can find this noted right on the packaging. They contain sealed lithium ion batteries with a 10 year life span.

Enforcement of Smoke Detector Law

Smoke detectors are required in all homes, but hey are typically inspected by the local fire department when you go to sell your home. In order to sell your home, you must bring aa smoke inspection certificate from the local fire department to closing. This ensures that your property is in compliance before being transferred to a new owner. So, if you are looking to sell your home this winter, be sure to replace your smoke detectors with the property type before your scheduled inspection. Call your local fire department for additional information and guidance on the new MA Smoke Detector law for homes built before 1975.