New smoke detectors work better and look better - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

New smoke detectors work better and look better

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The San Diego Fire-Rescue Department is reminding homeowners to make sure smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working and up-to-date in their homes.

First alert says their new Atom smoke alarm is about the size of a two-inch votive candle, and a huge improvement from those old ugly clunkers that used to clutter your home.

Gigi Lubin from First Alert says the Atom will soon be available in colors that'll match almost any kitchen.

"This is going to be available in a wood grain finish, also bronze and stainless steel," Lubin said.

First Alert is also rolling out a new slimmer and sleeker all-in-one smoke-fire and carbon monoxide alarm, which are about half the width of a traditional smoke alarm.

"It's wonderful. I know we won't have any pushback at all when we say you have to have an extra one here, an extra one there," Fire Marshal Doug Perry said.

Perry says every year in the United States, about 450 people die from carbon monoxide poisoinings.

"The majority of the CO deaths are in your house," he said.

In the last four years, San Diego firefighters have responded to more than 500 fire alarms resulting in 14 deaths, and most of the fatal fires occur in homes lacking alarms.

"They are inexpensive, between $20 and $40 a piece," Perry said.

Perry says do the math. Carbon monoxide alarms are expected to last about 5 to 7 years, smoke alarms about 10 years, which averages out to less than a penny a day to protect your family.

"These smoke detectors work. They will alarm you early enough that you will be able to get out of the house," he said.

The new alarms come equipped with photo-electric technology and a system that First Alert says will trigger fewer nuisance alarms.

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