As of the 1 February 1999 all residential properties are required to have smoke detectors/alarms fitted. The owners of these properties are responsible for the installation.
For rental properties, it is the landlord's responsibility to ensure smoke detectors/alarms are installed and kept in working condition. However, you can take action to ensure compliance with the regulations at any time.
The Building Regulations state that smoke detectors/alarms must meet the Australian Standard AS 3786-1993. You will find a range of complying models at most electrical appliance outlets or hardware stores.
Smoke detectors/alarms must be connected to the buildings power mains as well as having a battery back-up, unless your building was built before 1 August 1997, where a battery-powered alarm/detector meets the regulations.
Smoke detectors/alarms are intended to detect smoke before it reaches people sleeping in a building. Therefore they must be located in a position designed to wake sleeping occupants up and in time to evacuate a building, please refer to our smoke detector brochure below for further details.
For smoke detectors/alarms to be effective, it is essential that they are maintained. The operation of most smoke detectors/alarms can be readily checked by depressing a button on the outside of the alarm. The battery in most smoke detectors/alarms will need to be renewed on an annual basis. Smoke detectors/alarms should emit a warning sound when the battery needs replacement.
A fine of up to $500 could be imposed on an owner who fails to comply with the smoke alarm requirements of the Building Regulations.