@vecnar said in Connecting smoke detectors to house alarm:
Everything is now being driven by batteries, unfortunately lithium batteries is just another thing that can create fire, that is just my association with lithium batteries after watching too many liveleak videos.
I think the X-Sense comes with "3 V CR123A lithium battery" and they say should last for 5 years. Below is example of worst case scenario and doesn't look too bad compared to phone batteries.
CR123A Lithium Battery Fire – 00:30
Interesting find. I haven't heard of any actual non-abused lithium primary cells doing that in real life though. Have you? It has me wondering now. There's no dendrites that I know of like there are with rechargeable lithium batteries, which is the main culprit in those disasters.
Having smoke detector on battery for 5-10 years is good way of doing it as it allows you to place sensor anywhere you want and not to depend on AC wiring.
The only thing to check if it is possible to link more than 1 remote control, 1 for each floor/location. Possibly as you would need to get to remote first before going to check originating sensor.
According to below website it is best to use a combination of ionization and photoelectric sensors but not sure if any have 2, I looked on a few and only photoelectric was listed.
X-sense also has smart wifi smoke detector, I assume it still operates internally between other smoke sensors over RF 868 or 915MHZ and uses 2.4GHZ wifi network and internet connection to get to their servers and notify you on the phone. If it would depend on wifi alone power loss to Access Point would cause communication breakdown between the sensors.
Let me know which one you will go for and your findings.
I suppose the argument in favor of hardwired smoke alarms is that people are lazy and may not replace batteries, or might remove the batteries altogether if they were battery powered to avoid the chirping but then remount the smoke alarm (for aesthetic reasons) and then forget about it. However, as long as one doesn't do that, I think an argument can be made that battery powered smokes are actually safer because they're immune to power surges that might damage them if they were wired to mains. If that were to occur, when would it be discovered? During a weekly test? Well, if laziness is a concern, I don't think doing a weekly test is very likely. In fact, I doubt if more than a tiny minority of people do a weekly smoke alarm test, and I'm not at all sure how thorough those tests really are in terms of discovering failure modes.
So, out of the battery powered smoke alarms, the BRK battery powered wireless interconnected smoke alarm with voice location does seem to work as expected, even if the hardwired ones don't. The Nest Protect looks even better, but the price is more than 2x as much. If I could convince myself that the Nest Protect actually did a good job of self testing itself (as it claims to), then I probably would pay up for that. So far, though, all the reviews I've seen have been far too superficial to address that question other than to say something like "It tests itself 400 times a day" or some such. Yeah, but what does that really mean? How thorough is the test, and is it really good enough? It might just be marketing puffery.
Neither of them work with a relay that I'm aware of. However, there is a Ring Listener that listens for a smoke alarm going off. It has the virtue of being rather inexpensive:
I'm not sure if there are other listeners available. I suspect so, but I haven't looked. It might save the bother of DIYing a custom solution. Alternatively, the Nest probably sends a text to your phone in the event of a smoke detection, and that could perhaps be used to activate a separate home alarm through ITTT or similar. Maybe it can trigger something less indirect in the event of a smoke detection? If so, if it could avoid needing to DIY a solution, perhaps that might tilt the decision in favor of a Nest. However, I'd rather a solution didn't blithely assume that internet connectivity is working. Something more direct would certainly be preferable.
P.S. BRK has OneLink, but the reviews on amazon, including nearly all recent reviews, have made it look like a terrible choice--far worse than I would have imagined, especially given its high price. For that reason, I wouldn't consider a OneLink until well after the issues raised are known to be fixed. For the price, people should be getting top quality, and it doesn't read like they are. Nearly all the most recent reviews are pretty consistently extremely negative and in stark contrast to the amazon reviews of the second generation Nest Protect, which has been on the market for quite some time now.
P.P.S. This article refers to a number of other alarm listeners:https://www.cnet.com/home/smart-home/devices-to-help-your-smart-home-guard-against-fire/ The article is from 2016, though, and I haven't confirmed whether all of those products are still on the market or not. I did check on Halo, and they went out of business in 2018. In contrast, the Roost Battery thing actually sounds kind of interesting: https://getroost.com/sensors/ [But is it even still available? Their webstore says it's sold out] Some ebay sellers have it, but at a much higher price. And if it hinges on using a special battery.....I don't know that I'd want to be chained to that except as maybe a short-term stopgap. ]
There's probably somethig out there that I haven't seen that might do the job. Overall, it seems like a strangely stagnant market filled with products that aren't user friendly. I presume the stranglehold that BRK and Kidde have on the American market has probably stifled innovation, at least as far as what's available here that has regulatory approval. I'd be surprised if Europe doesn't have better options than we do here in the US.