Free Smoke and Carbon Monoxide (CO) Alarms

Free smoke/CO alarms and installation
Time to apply
5-10 mins
Processing time
3-5 days
Apply for Smoke/CO or Strobe alarms


Free Smoke/CO alarms for Eligible Seattle Homeowners

Free combination smoke/CO alarms are provided and installed in the homes of qualifying Seattle homeowners who live in their homes. We do not provide smoke/CO alarms for home sale purposes. The smoke/CO alarms are battery-powered and are installed by Seattle firefighters.

Strobe alarm for deaf residents

Deaf/Hard of Hearing Seattle residents may request a free strobe smoke alarm (see image). These strobe smoke alarms plug into an electrical outlet and must be installed in the sleeping room. Installation is included. (Note: The strobe alarm must be plugged into power to work. The back-up battery only powers the audible alarm during a power failure).

Strobe Smoke Alarm


To qualify for free smoke/CO alarms, you must:

  • Live in the city of Seattle
  • Own and live in your home (rental properties do not qualify and this program is not meant to satisfy sale/purchase requirements)
  • Identify as one of the following:
    • Senior (age 65 and up)
    • Live on a low income
    • Have any type of disability

To qualify for free strobe alarms, you must:

  • Have a deaf or hard of hearing disability
  • Live in the city of Seattle (renters and homeowners both qualify)

How to Apply

Step 1: Residents fill out an online request form. Residents must be low income, over the age of 65 or deaf/hard of hearing. Landlords are required to provide smoke/CO alarms for all rental units.

Step 2: After submitting your request you will be contacted by your local fire station to schedule an appointment.

Step 3: Seattle Fire Department Office will come to your home and install qualifying alarms. Seattle Fire Department recommends one smoke/CO alarm on every level of your home and inside every bedroom.

Step 4: After installation is complete residents will sign a form with the Fire Department officer confirming proper installation.

For Rental Properties

Whether you live in a rented house or apartment, your landlord is required to provide you with a working smoke and CO alarm. Tenants are responsible for maintaining the alarms.

If your rental property does not have a smoke alarm, inform your landlord of this obligation. If you are having difficulty communicating with your landlord about this matter, the following organizations may be of assistance:

Installation, Maintenance, and Safety


Install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home and inside every bedroom.


Test battery-operated alarms once a month to ensure they are working.


Replace the batteries in your smoke alarm once a year. Each fall, when clocks are changed to mark the end of Daylight Saving Time, install a new battery. If an alarm "chirps" to indicate a low battery, change it.

A ten-year lithium battery smoke alarm does not need to have its battery changed. Replace smoke alarms that use extended-life, lithium batteries when the alarm "chirps" or fails to respond to periodic testing. The batteries in these units cannot be replaced.

False Alarms

Use the hush button to silence a false alarm from cooking smoke or steam. Never disconnect or remove the battery. If your smoke alarm does not have a hush button use a magazine or kitchen towel to fan the smoke away from the alarm.


Replace your smoke alarms every 10 years. If you do not know how old your smoke alarm is, or if it is 10 years or older, replace it as soon as possible.

Smoke alarm video from the Seattle Fire Department

Download Smoke/CO alarm safety print-outs

Carbon Monoxide (CO) Alarms

CO alarms have a life expectancy of around seven (7) years. All CO alarms produced after August 1, 2009, have an end-of-life warning notification that alerts the resident that the alarm should be replaced. The CO alarm will beep every 30 seconds or display ERR or END.

If a CO alarm is at its end-of-life, replacing the battery will not stop the beep. Some CO alarms have a feature that will silence the signal for 30 days, but this will not solve the issue as the CO alarm will continue to beep after the 30-day period ends.

Carbon Monoxide Video from the Seattle Fire Department

Download a print-friendly file of the Carbon Monoxide Alarm infographic


Fire Department

Harold Scoggins, Fire Chief
Address: 301 2nd Ave S, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: 301 2nd Ave S, Seattle, WA, 98104
Phone: (206) 386-1400
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The Seattle Fire Department (SFD) has 33 fire stations located throughout the City. SFD deploys engine companies, ladder companies, and aid and medic units to mitigate loss of life and property resulting from fires, medical emergencies, and other disasters.