How to wire a heat detector

Written by marshal m. rosenthal
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A heat detector functions similarly to that of a smoke detector in that it provides a warning that a fire is present, as opposed to alerting you about smoke. To wire a heat detector properly, follow the instructions provided in the manual that comes with the unit once the base has been installed in the ceiling opposite an electrical junction box. A few household tools will be needed, but no special skills are required.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Flat-edged jeweller's screwdriver
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Phillips jeweller's screwdriver

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Place the heat detector on a work surface with the bottom facing down. Insert the tip of a flat-edged jeweller's screwdriver into the rectangular hole on the side. Press in on the tip to release an inner tab. Rotate the front cover counter-clockwise to remove it from the detector.

  2. 2

    Rotate the detector so that the LED window is closest to you. Locate the jumper slot above and to the left of the LED window. Insert the tip of the flat-edged jeweller's screwdriver into the jumper slot and beneath the jumper head that is inside.

  3. 3

    Lift up on the tip to loosen the jumper head. Pull the jumper head that is in the jumper slot farthest from you out with the jaws of a needle-nose pliers. Reinsert the jumper head into the jumper slot, only closest to you rather than farthest from you. Place the front cover on the detector and twist it on with a clockwise motion.

  4. 4

    Pull the fuse or trip the circuit breaker so that there no longer is electrical power flowing to the junction box in which the heat detector is to be connected. The information relating to which electric line the fuse/circuit breaker affects is typically noted on the inside of the fuse box cover.

  5. 5

    Loosen the two screws on the back o the detector with a Phillips jeweller's screwdriver. Wind the exposed end of the black wire attached to the electrical junction box around the screw that has the positive ("+") label. Wind the exposed end of the red wire attached to the electrical junction box around the other screw; this has the negative ("-") label. Tighten the screws.

  6. 6

    Place the detector's back against the base. Twist the detector onto the base with a clockwise motion. Restore the power to the electric line.

Tips and warnings

  • Always position the wiring so that the base of the heat detector does not cut into the wires when installed into the ceiling.

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