Remote Smoke Detector Introduction

If you have ever had a fire in your home or witnessed the aftermath of a fire, you know how important smoke alarms are. Yet, if you are anything like me, you know very little about them. In reviewing the Kidde RemoteLync remote smoke detector, I not only found a way to add an additional layer of protection to my home, but I also got an education about smart smoke alarms.

The Kidde RemoteLync is a remote notification device that listens for smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in your home and sends an alert to your smartphone when there’s a potential issue. It is a small white boxy-looking device about 2” square. It plugs into a standard 120V wall outlet and connects to your home’s WiFi network. Set up is easy. Install the Kidde RemoteLync app on your iPhone or Android phone and follow the simple instructions to set up the device. The device actually talks to you indicating when it is ready, etc. You can also use the app on a PC or tablet.

My first attempt at set up, however, completely failed. A quick call to Kidde pinpointed my problem. My home smoke detectors were too old to work with this device. The website says that RemoteLync communicates with most UL-listed smoke and CO alarms manufactured after 1999. The two smoke detectors in my home were probably manufactured well before then.  That is when my education about smoke alarms began. To my amazement, I found that smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. It makes sense that since they monitor the home every minute of every day, they have a limited life span. The consumer Product Safety Commission states that the risk of dying in homes without smoke alarms is twice as high as it is in homes that have working smoke alarms. To make sure that the smoke alarm will work properly when needed, old smoke alarms should be replaced.

Kidde was nice enough to provide me with two of their ten-year life battery backup smoke alarms with sealed lithium batteries, model i12010S, which retail for $34.99 each.

I was apprehensive about installing these since they are hardwired-units and working with electricity is not my forte. Yet following a Kidde YouTube installation video made it easy enough to accomplish in spite of the myriad wires.

remote smoke detector


Sandy Berger, respected computer authority, journalist, media guest, speaker, and author, has more than three decades of experience as a computer and technology expert. Her eight books include: How to Have a Meaningful Relationship with Your Computer, Your Official Grown-up's Guide to AOL and the Internet, Cyber Savers –Tips & Tricks for Today’s Drowning Computer Users, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Better Living through Technology, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to the Internet, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Gadgets & Gizmos, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Online Health & Wellness, and Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Online Travel. Sandy’s newspaper column, magazine articles, feature stories, product reviews, and computer tips can be found at her website, Compu-KISS.