New smoke alarm legislation – do I really need to have them fitted?

06 May 2016

The Repairing Standard was introduced (3 September 2007) and building standards regulations required that there should be one or more than one functioning smoke alarm installed in the property, the number and position of alarms to be determined by the size and layout of the house. There was normally to be at least one smoke alarm on each floor. If there were multiple alarms, they should be interlinked. A smoke alarm installed from 3 September 2007 onwards had to be mains powered with a standby power supply. Properties with battery operated smoke alarms were permissible until these installed units failed.

New Smoke Alarm Legislation

The Scottish Government has now produced revised statutory guidance, issued by Building Standards Division (Technical Handbooks 2013: – Domestic – Fire, on the requirements for smoke alarms. A copy of the revised statutory guidance is available on the PRHP website

However, the main points relative to smoke detectors are as follows.

The revised Domestic Technical Handbook guidance states there should be at least:

  • One functioning smoke alarm in every room which is frequently used by the occupants for general daytime living purposes
  • One functioning smoke alarm in every circulation space, such as hallways and landings
  • One heat alarm in every kitchen
  • All alarms should be interlinked

The number and position of the alarms will depend on the size and layout of the house. There should be at least one alarm on each floor.

The landlord should either install smoke and fire detectors that meet the standard set by building regulations or be able to justify why a lesser level of protection is appropriate in a particular house.

If you need any more advice get in touch on 0141 221 7993 or 0131 221 9131