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  # 1826629 21-Jul-2017 15:11
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As previously advised, definitely normal. Treat it as a warning that you're potentially not going to get an alarm in case of an actual fire in the few minutes it takes to settle down after a battery change.

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  # 1826631 21-Jul-2017 15:14
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Is it powered via batteries or powered via hard wired in with battery backup? I can't recall specifically....but even the hardwired smoke detectors have to be replaced ---I think around 8 yrs or maybe 10.


 
 
 
 


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  # 1826678 21-Jul-2017 16:59
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I've had Cavius alarms for the past 4 years or so - I'd never go back to the old style.  Definitely worth paying the extra money for.  As mentioned previous, they also make a "kitchen" model, which aids in protection, without the false alarms.

 

Also, the after sales service is brilliant - where there was a fault they were quick to respond, sent out a new unit and done.

 

With the older style alarms, I'm not sure that they can be strictly disposed of easily (especially the ionisation ones - they have americium in them).


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  # 1826698 21-Jul-2017 17:27
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I take my radioactive ones to the annual hazardous chemical waste collection. They queried me once on them but accepted that radioactivity was sufficiently hazardous not to go in the landfill.

 

 





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neb

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  # 1826702 21-Jul-2017 17:41
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Rikkitic:

I take my radioactive ones to the annual hazardous chemical waste collection. They queried me once on them but accepted that radioactivity was sufficiently hazardous not to go in the landfill.

 

 

A microcurie of Am-241 (corresponding to a fractional microgram) in a landfill really isn't going to make any difference.

 


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  # 1826703 21-Jul-2017 17:42
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wazzageek:

With the older style alarms, I'm not sure that they can be strictly disposed of easily (especially the ionisation ones - they have americium in them).



The Ministry of Health has no worries

"Disposing of old smoke alarms

When your smoke alarm fails, you can put it out in your normal rubbish disposal.

On average, a cubic metre of New Zealand soil is about as radioactive as 13 smoke alarms. Disposing of smoke alarms in a landfill doesn’t really change the landfill’s overall radioactivity.

In fact, the natural radioactivity of domestic rubbish is less than that of soil. Even if every household threw out several smoke alarms a year, the average radioactivity in landfills would still be lower than in most New Zealand soils."

They also say it would take 300-400 ionization alarms to equal the radiation given off by the average NZ brick house.

On the subject of collecting old alarms an American Boy Scout got into trouble collecting radioactive material and was briefly famous. This is a review by a nuclear scientist of a book on David Hahn http://pubs.acs.org/cen/books/8232/8232books.html

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  # 1826705 21-Jul-2017 17:55
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Bung:
wazzageek:

 

With the older style alarms, I'm not sure that they can be strictly disposed of easily (especially the ionisation ones - they have americium in them).

 



The Ministry of Health has no worries

"Disposing of old smoke alarms

When your smoke alarm fails, you can put it out in your normal rubbish disposal.

On average, a cubic metre of New Zealand soil is about as radioactive as 13 smoke alarms. Disposing of smoke alarms in a landfill doesn’t really change the landfill’s overall radioactivity.

In fact, the natural radioactivity of domestic rubbish is less than that of soil. Even if every household threw out several smoke alarms a year, the average radioactivity in landfills would still be lower than in most New Zealand soils."

They also say it would take 300-400 ionization alarms to equal the radiation given off by the average NZ brick house.

On the subject of collecting old alarms an American Boy Scout got into trouble collecting radioactive material and was briefly famous. This is a review by a nuclear scientist of a book on David Hahn http://pubs.acs.org/cen/books/8232/8232books.html

 

 

 

From my recent experience, councils seem to not mind leaving new contamination to future generations to clean up..

 

 

 

I wouldn't be surprised if throwing CFL bulbs in landfills with the mercury in them, is worse. But there again it doesn't seem councils care.


 
 
 
 


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  # 1826708 21-Jul-2017 18:09
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mattwnz:

From my recent experience, councils seem to not mind leaving new contamination to future generations to clean up..

 

 

There's a difference between being irresponsible with pollution and panicking over something just because it has the word "radiation" in the title. A microcurie of Am-241 in a landfill is nothing compared to the plastic and other toxic materials in the alarm itself.

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  # 1826712 21-Jul-2017 18:20
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neb:
Rikkitic:

 

I take my radioactive ones to the annual hazardous chemical waste collection. They queried me once on them but accepted that radioactivity was sufficiently hazardous not to go in the landfill.

 

A microcurie of Am-241 (corresponding to a fractional microgram) in a landfill really isn't going to make any difference.

 

Maybe not, but what about the accumulation over time? Anyway, it is the principle than counts.

 

 

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


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  # 1826818 21-Jul-2017 20:35
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neb

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  # 1826850 21-Jul-2017 22:57
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Rikkitic:

Maybe not, but what about the accumulation over time?

 

 

Of all that plastic? Yeah, that is kind of irresponsible. OTOH for the Am-241, it's a microgram in several cubic metres of other fill (you don't throw out smoke alarms that often), it's embedded in a metal button, and it's only an alpha emitter, so you'd have to extract it from the alarm, grind out the Am241, do that for hundreds of alarms in order to get enough to be useful, and then disperse the dust in air so you could breathe it. Even then, all you'd be doing is maybe increasing your lifetime cancer risk by 5%.

 

 

That's an off-the-cuff thing, the exact calculation would probably make a fine student homework assignment question but I'm so over doing those :-).

 

 

Edited to add: OK, there's a weak gamma as well which I'm discounting, it's the alphas you need to worry about if you get the source inside you.

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  # 1826876 22-Jul-2017 08:55
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MadEngineer:

 

Better stop eating bananas then.

 

 

I enjoy bananas. Not so keen on smoke alarm sandwiches.

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


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  # 1826888 22-Jul-2017 09:27
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neb:
Rikkitic:

 

Maybe not, but what about the accumulation over time?

 

Of all that plastic? Yeah, that is kind of irresponsible. OTOH for the Am-241, it's a microgram in several cubic metres of other fill (you don't throw out smoke alarms that often), it's embedded in a metal button, and it's only an alpha emitter, so you'd have to extract it from the alarm, grind out the Am241, do that for hundreds of alarms in order to get enough to be useful, and then disperse the dust in air so you could breathe it. Even then, all you'd be doing is maybe increasing your lifetime cancer risk by 5%. That's an off-the-cuff thing, the exact calculation would probably make a fine student homework assignment question but I'm so over doing those :-). Edited to add: OK, there's a weak gamma as well which I'm discounting, it's the alphas you need to worry about if you get the source inside you.

 

I guess your point is that we can throw out all the crap we like and forget about it. Along with the smoke alarms can go all the batteries for which there is also no recycling policy here, though it is now common in Europe. No  need to worry about plastic bags either. The ocean will take care of them. Why have deposits on glass or plastic bottles? They just annoy the supermarkets so why not encourage people to drop them on the roadside?

 

Even if radioactivity is not an issue with smoke alarms I don't see why they should go into landfills. New Zealand is behind other parts of the world when it comes to looking after the environment.

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


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