Smoke Alarms

Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives! 

​When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast.  Maintaining your smoke alarm and knowing what to do if it goes off are key to getting outside quickly.   

  • A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.
  • Install smoke alarms in every sleeping room and outside each separate sleeping area.  Install alarms on every level of the home.
  • Smoke alarms should be interconnected.  When one sounds, they all sound. 
  • Test all smoke alarms at least once a month.  Press the test button to make sure the alarm is working.
  • A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on a wall.  Keep smoke alarms at least 10 feet (3 meters) from the stove to avoid nuisance alarms.
  • Strobe light and/or bed shaker alarms are available for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.  
  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

Smoke Alarm Information



“Operat​ion Smoke Alarm” Program

The “Operation Smoke Alarm” program is designed to provide and install smoke alarm(s) free of charge to Virginia Beach residents who own AND live in the requested home.  Factors considered for providing this service are:  

  • Not having a working smoke alarm in the home
  • Not being financially able to purchase alarms
  • Having at last one child under the age of 18
  • Having anyone over 60 years of age living in the home
  • Not being physically able to install an alarm on your own

To request assistance from the “Operation Smoke Alarm” Program, please click here to APPLY ONLINE or call 471-5826.

*Virginia Beach Fire Department cannot assist or replace hard-wired smoke alarms. Please contact a licensed electrician. 

Rental Properties

In accordance with §55.1-1220 A of the Code of Virginia, all Virginia landlords must install smoke alarms in rental properties. Landlords are also required to provide the tenant an annual certificate stating that the smoke alarms are installed to code and functioning properly.