The office of the State Fire Marshal recommends the following for smoke alarms: 

  • What part of the house needs smoke alarms: smoke alarms are required on each level of the home (including the basement). 
  • Where should you install smoke alarms: in each sleeping room as per the applicable requirements of the State Building Code at the time of construction. However, regardless of the building code, the Office of the State Fire Marshal recommends adding smoke alarms to each bedroom or other areas used for sleeping for increased protection. 
  • Where should smoke alarms NOT be installed: kitchens, bathrooms, garages, and unheated areas where moisture, steam, frost, cooking vapors, and exhaust fumes could cause a nuisance alarm.
  • When to replace smoke alarms: Either when they fail to respond to operability tests (in less than 10 years) or 10 years from the date of manufacture, whichever comes first.
  • Testing smoke alarms: Test at least once every six months, and replace batteries as needed. Test smoke alarms by pushing the test button.
  • What to do if the alarm sounds: Get outside and stay outside. Get down and crawl low under the smoke to your way out. Call 911 or your local emergency number for help. Never go back inside for people, pets, or belongings.

SMOKE ALARM INFORMATION FOR PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, 

LANDLORDS, AND TENANTS

Are smoke alarms required in rental dwelling units?

  • Yes. The owner of any rental dwelling unit or the owner’s authorized agent shall be responsible for supplying, installing, and maintaining the required smoke alarms or smoke detectors and shall provide a written notice containing instructions for testing the devices. The notice shall be given to the tenant at the time the tenant first takes possession of the premises. (ORS 479.270)
  • If a smoke alarm is battery-operated or has a battery-operated backup system, the landlord shall supply working batteries for the alarm at the beginning of a new tenancy.

What are my obligations as a tenant?

  • It shall be the responsibility of the tenant of any rental dwelling unit to perform such tests on the smoke alarms or smoke detectors (located in a part of the dwelling unit that the tenant is entitled to occupy to the exclusion of others) as are recommended by the manufacturer’s instructions and immediately notify, in writing, the owner or authorized agent of any deficiencies. Testing intervals shall not exceed six months. It shall also be the responsibility of the tenant during the tenancy to replace any dead batteries, as needed.
  • A tenant must test, at least once every six months, and replace batteries as needed in any smoke alarm provided by the landlord and notify the landlord in writing of any operating deficiencies. (ORS 479.275)
  • A tenant may not remove or tamper with a smoke alarm. Tampering includes the removal of working batteries. (ORS 479.300)

The office of the State Fire Marshal recommends the following for Carbon Monoxide (CO2) alarms: 

What a CO2 alarm is used for: CO2 alarm detects CO2 and produces a distinctive audible alert when CO2 is detected. It may be a stand-alone unit or part of an alarm system

Sources of CO2 include: heater, fireplace, appliance (e.g., furnace, dryer, or water heater), or cooking source (e.g.., stove, oven) that uses coal, kerosene, petroleum products, wood, or other fuels (e.g., oil or natural gas) that emit CO2 as a by-product of combustion; or an attached garage with an opening that communicates directly with a living space. (OAR 837-047-0110)

Where to install CO2 alarms: install CO2 alarms on each level of your home with bedrooms (sleeping areas). A CO2 alarm must be located within each bedroom or within 15 feet outside of each bedroom door. Bedrooms on separate floors in a structure containing two or more stories require separate CO2 alarms. For best protection, CO2 alarms are recommended in bedrooms and in the hallway. All CO2 alarms must be installed in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommended instructions. (OAR 837-047-0130)

When to replace CO2 alarms: CO2 alarms should be replaced when the end-of-life signal is activated, the manufacturer’s replacement date is reached, or when they fail to respond to operability tests. (NFPA 720)

Testing CO2 alarms: Test alarms monthly. CO2 alarms must be maintained, tested, and batteries replaced according to the manufacturer’s recommended instructions. (OAR 837-047-0150)

If the CO2 alarm sounds?!?!? Get outside to fresh air and call 911 or your local emergency number for help. If anyone is experiencing the symptoms of CO poisoning, get medical attention immediately.

CO2 ALARM INFORMATION FOR PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, 

LANDLORDS AND TENANTS 

Are CO2 alarms required in rental dwelling units?

  • If you have a CO2 source, CO2 alarms are required in rental dwelling units. Effective April 1, 2011, landlords must provide properly functioning CO2 alarms for one- and two-family dwellings or multifamily housing containing a CO2 source. The landlord shall provide a new tenant with alarm testing instructions. If a CO2 alarm is battery-operated or has a battery-operated backup system, the landlord shall supply working batteries for the alarm at the beginning of a new tenancy. (OAR 837-047-0120, 0160)

What are my obligations as a tenant?

  • A tenant must test, at least once every six months, and replace batteries as needed in any CO2 alarm provided by the landlord and must notify the landlord in writing of any operating deficiencies. (OAR 837-047-0160)
  • A tenant may not remove or tamper with a CO2 alarm. Tampering includes the removal of working batteries. (OAR 837-047-0170)

What do I do if I am renting and have a CO2 source, and my landlord has not provided a working CO2 alarm?

  • A tenant must notify the landlord in writing of any operating deficiencies. (837-047-0160)
  • If the landlord receives written notice from the tenant of a deficiency in a CO2 alarm, other than dead batteries, the landlord shall repair or replace the alarm. (ORS 90.317)

Source Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM) 

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