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How Much Do Smoke And Carbon Monoxide Detectors Cost?

Typical Range: $10 - $165

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Smoke and CO Detector Installation Costs

Installing a simple alarm costs $10, including materials. Average models range from $20 to $30, or $25 on average, while high-quality devices cost about $65. Alarms cost less than carbon monoxide (CO) detectors, which start at $20 and can cost as much as $165. The average price for a residentially installed alarm is $65.

On This Page:

  1. Average Smoke and CO Detector Costs
  2. Smoke Detector Costs
  3. Fire Alarm System Cost
  4. Commercial Fire Alarm System Cost
  5. Carbon Monoxide Detector Cost
  6. Cost to Replace Smoke and CO Detectors
  7. Smoke and CO Detector Costs
  8. Smoke and CO Detector Cost Factors
  9. DIY Smoke and CO Detector Installation vs. Hire a Pro
  10. FAQs

Average Smoke and CO Detector Costs

Average Cost$25
High Cost$165
Low Cost$10

Smoke Detector Costs

The cost of a basic smoke detector starts at about $10 and can go up to $65 for specialized features. It generates an audible alarm when it detects smoke, which forms one part of a complete fire control system. Smoke detectors typically run on replaceable batteries, making them easy to install. Smoke detectors for homes generally use ionization, optical devices or a combination of both methods to detect smoke.

Smoke Detector Installation Cost

The cost of installing a smoke detector is typically between $30 and $100 per hour if you get an electrician to do it. Your location is the biggest factor for the installation cost of a smoke detector due to the difference in the cost of labor between locations. Each smoke detector requires about an hour to install, but you can usually get a discount if you need multiple units. In this case, each detector will cost about $40 to professionally install.

Smoke Detector Prices

The cost of an itemized smoke detector is about $10. A chamber with two electrodes passing an electrical current between them triggers an alarm when smoke enters the chamber, which lowers the chamber's ionization level. These smoke detectors are best for fast-moving fires, as opposed to smoky fires.

An optical smoke detector costs about $60. This type uses a photoelectric detector to detect smoke when it scatters a light source. It doesn't respond as quickly to flame-heavy fires as an ionization smoke detector, but it's better at detecting smoldering fires.

The National Fire Protection Association recommends that homes have both ionization and photoelectric smoke detectors.

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Fire Alarm System Cost

The cost of an interconnected fire system is typically between $2 and $3 per square foot for new construction. Retrofitting an existing building is more expensive, usually between $4 and $12 per square foot. The total cost of installing a full fire alarm system averages between $650 and $950. Such a system includes different devices for detecting smoke and fire.

Cost to Hardwire Smoke Detectors

The cost of installing smoke detectors throughout the house ranges from $80 to $120 per hour, depending on the contractor's experience and the complexity of the project. In most cases, a general contractor can install the wiring for smoke detectors rather than an electrician. It’s also useful to replace all of the battery-operated alarms in the house at the same time. A general contractor may offer a single price for the entire project, which often results in savings.

Commercial Fire Alarm System Cost

A complete commercial fire alarm system costs between $1 and $12 per square foot. The primary reason for such a large range is that commercial systems are highly customized, so they don't have fixed prices. Commercial properties also need a monitoring service, which costs another $50 to $60 per month.

Talk to a fire alarm professional to get an accurate price quote for a commercial installation. A specialist in commercial installations should also be able to recommend specific products and designs.

Fire Alarm Panel Prices

The cost of a fire alarm panel can be as high as $800. This component is a vital part of a fire alarm system since it controls the alarms. Other parts of the system that may require periodic emplacement include a carbon dioxide (CO) sensor, which costs between $50 and $80.

Smoke alarms typically require 9V batteries that cost $3 to $4 each. Check the batteries each time you buy other parts of a fire alarm system, so you can replace the dead batteries.

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Carbon Monoxide Detector Cost

The cost of CO detectors ranges from $15 to $150, depending on the type of detector. The labor cost starts at $45 an hour, but the contractor may also quote a flat fee for larger projects. CO detectors are important safety devices because CO is invisible, odorless and lethal in small concentrations. These devices are distinct from smoke detectors, which don’t perform carbon monoxide detection.

Cost to Install Carbon Monoxide Detector

The cost of installing a single battery-powered carbon monoxide detector is about one hour of labor for a general contractor. In most cases, the contractor will charge a single fee for the detector and installation.

A house will require at least one CO detector on each level of the house. You also need to install a detector in the hall near each group of bedrooms. You should install CO detectors at eye level so they’re at least 15 feet away from normal sources of CO such as an oven or heating appliances.

Carbon Monoxide Detector Prices

The prices of CO detectors range from $15 to $150, based on whether the detector is a biomimetic, electrochemical or semiconducting type.

  • Biomimetic detector: $15-$50. Contains synthetic hemoglobin, which darkens when CO enters the machine.
  • Electrochemical detector: $50-$130. Uses a platinum electrode and acid that generates an electric current in the presence of CO.
  • Semiconductor detector: $75-$150. Rarer than other types and contain a semiconductor made of a metal oxide such as tin dioxide that changes its electrical resistance in the presence of CO and generates an alarm.

Cost to Replace Smoke and CO Detectors

The cost of replacing smoke and CO detectors is between $10 and $165 for each new unit. It will also cost $80 to $120 per hour if you hire a general contractor to replace the unit. In addition, you should also replace alarms at this time if you have a connected alarm system to ensure its components are compatible.

Smoke and CO Detector Costs

The cost of a combination smoke and CO detector starts at $35 for a basic unit. A combination detector with internet connectivity and smart capabilities is about $120. Substantial volume discounts are available for all combo detectors.

Smoke and CO Detector Cost Factors

The intelligence of the system is one of the most significant cost factors for smoke and CO detectors. A high-end system can distinguish between slow and fast-burning fires, and provide greater accuracy regarding the fire’s location. They can also send alerts over the phone to inform you of a fire when you aren’t home. Additional features that increase the cost of smoke and CO detectors include the ability to deactivate alarms remotely.

DIY Smoke and CO Detector Installation vs. Hire a Pro

Installing a single smoke or CO detector shouldn’t be too difficult for someone with basic DIY skills. The primary challenge is ensuring you place the detector in an area where they’ll quickly detect smoke and CO. A professional should perform a complete installation, especially when it involves electrical wiring.


Can I replace a smoke detector myself?

You can replace a smoke detector yourself provided it isn’t connected to your home’s electrical system. A smoke detector that uses batteries as its sole power source only requires you to install a fresh battery and attach the unit in an appropriate location. Hardwiring a smoke detector is a job for a licensed electrician.

Where should a carbon monoxide detector be placed?

You should install at least one CO detector on each floor near the main exit from that floor. You also need one close to the bedroom. Keep the detector away from normal sources of CO such as the kitchen and appliances that produce heat.

Can a smoke detector be installed on a wall?

You can install a smoke detector on a wall, although there are considerations that affect its exact placement. It should be at eye level to ensure you can easily make adjustments like replacing the battery. It’s also important to ensure that the unit isn’t on a part of the wall that’s critical for other purposes.

What are some easy ways to prevent fires?

Aside from regularly testing your smoke alarm, there are a few other things you can do to prevent a potential fire. Make sure to regularly remove lint from your dryer, which can catch fire, and check all heat sources frequently. If you have a chimney, consider getting it professionally cleaned. A professional chimney sweep can cost $244 on average.

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