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Household Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

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disposal 


Types

IONIZATION DETECTORS
Most household smoke detectors are ionization smoke detectors, which contain very tiny amounts of radioactive material. When crushed, the ionization chamber may release radioactive particles, and therefore they are required to be labeled as containing radioactive content. However, with regular use intact ionization chamber smoke detectors pose little or no health threat. The benefits of using smoke detectors highly outweighs the risk of being exposed to radioactive poisoning from them. According to the National Fire Protection Association, almost two-thirds of home fire deaths resulted from fires in properties without working smoke alarms.

OPTICAL DETECTORS
Optical or photoelectric smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors do not contain radioactive material and require no special handling.

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Disposal

MANUFACTURER TAKEBACK
Although it is legal to dispose of the ionization detector in the trash, you are encouraged to return the detector back to the manufacturer. For more information, visit smoke detector take-back.

SAFE DISPOSAL EVENTS
Ionization detectors will be accepted at upcoming NYC Department of Sanitation SAFE disposal events.

CURBSIDE TRASH
If unable to return smoke detector to manufacturer, remove the battery and dispose of in the regular garbage. For battery disposal instructions, visit battery disposal.

ALSO SEE:
harmful products handling tips

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