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92 of 92 people found the following review helpful
on May 14, 2014
We needed to replace a total of nine smoke detectors in two houses and after some research, these look to be a good, dual sensor replacement. I already knew that one house had a different brand and I would need to replace the three wire connection plug with the new one included in the box. The other house had BRK/First Alert and was much easier. Those alarms were 12 years old and only had to replace the mounting base as the connection plug was the same.

I decided to go ahead and get the 10-year lithium batteries as may not need to replace them until the smoke alarms need replacing again in 8-10 years. Since the alarms will chirp if the battery gets low and with testing them every so often, they should last as we don't have many power failures. I will just use the included Duracell's in flashlights or other electronics as always needing them.

Before you take off the old ceiling mounting bracket, hold the new one up to it & see if it's smaller or bigger. In our case, it was a little bigger then the house that had the BRK/First alert, and a little smaller than the older house with the other brand. Then you will know if you need to paint around it once installed. If the old bracket is stuck to the wall/ceiling with paint, take a razor blade and cut around the edge before taking it down to keep from pulling off a strip of paint.

There has been several questions about these smoke alarms and to help out others, I have upload several pictures to see. I believe seeing real pictures are always better. I installed all nine of these and worked perfectly, also triggering them all when once goes off since they were wired up as interconnected.
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68 of 69 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 2013
- Dual smoke detectors (ionization and photoelectric) ensure that you get the advantages and safety of both, even the experts disagree on which is better (but they generally lean towards photoelectric) and Consumer Reports highly recommends dual detectors
- AA batteries are convenient and store more energy, and extremely long-lasting ones (i.e. Energizer Ultimate Lithium) are now available at a relatively reasonable cost, perfect for this application
- Alarm has a relatively small diameter and profile
- Test button doubles as a "Hush" function during accidental alarms
- Can be teamed with a single, highly-rated BRK/First Alert SC7010BV to add carbon monoxide detection to your residential alarm system
- Ionization smoke detectors need to be replaced after 10 years, they wear out
- Don't mix and match smoke and CO detector brands in your system, each uses a different interconnection scheme
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on February 10, 2013
We saw a TV news story, demonstrating that ionization smoke detectors are not good at detecting smoky fires, and photoelectric detectors not so good at hot, non-smoky ones. We wanted to get dual detectors to replace the existing ionization detectors in our condo. The existing units were made by BRK, so I ordered one of these dual ones and verified that it was in fact plug-compatible with the networked wired units. Then I ordered 5 more. The 6 units needed only new mounting rings on the ceiling, and plugged into the existing wiring. Replacing all 6 took less than an hour's work, and now we are better protected.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
This has both photoelectric and ionization sensing in one unit, whereas before I needed 2 separate smoke alarms in the hallway. The mounting plate has a different hooking pattern than my alarm from 10 years ago, the 7010B, so I removed the old mounting plate and replaced it with this. However, the wiring connector is the same so the hook-up was easy. This uses two AA batteries, whereas most others I've seen use a 9V battery. You could purchase a couple lithium AA batteries and never have to worry about replacing them for 10 years, which is the lifespan of this smoke alarm. Energizer AA Lithium Batteries 2 Pack, Lasts 9 Times Longer. One feature I like (if you don't buy the lithiums) is if you have a low battery and it starts chirping, you can press the button to silence it for 8 hours to give you time to go out and get batteries without the chirping sound making you crazy. I've had this installed a few days; so far, no false alarms even though it's very close to the bathroom and the excess humidity doesn't seem to bother it.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on July 29, 2013
Had existing BRK 4120 smoke alarms that were installed by builder 13 years ago and starting to experience ghost alarms in the middle of the night terrifying the kids. The direct replacement BRK 9120 had a lot of 1 out of 5's so went with the 3120's instead. I wanted the Photoelectric and Ionization combo anyway. These were super easy to install as they continue to use the same wiring harness. Just unplug old, remove and install new backing plate and plug in new. These new backing plates allow you to easily level the alarms so they aren't all crooked, so they look more professional installed. Only negative is the new backing plate is smaller than the 4120's in diameter, so had to repaint as previous owner just painted around the old ones. Will follow up if any false alarms.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on December 31, 2011
Sensitive but not too sensitive; already used the silence feature when dinner got burnt. Overall well worth the extra cost versus the crap ones that were installed by the builder. The latch feature, which leaves a light on the detector that set off the alarm, is the reason I bought 6 of these for home.
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50 of 64 people found the following review helpful
on November 21, 2013
I purchased five of these to replace some of my existing hard-wired BRK ionization detectors (model #9120B). I replaced ALL of my detectors because they contained only ionization sensors, and I learned recently that ionization detectors will not protect my family in the event of a fire. Most people will die in their beds from smoke inhalation before the ionization detectors will go off. There have been news reports about this, but I also delved into the research and came away convinced that I needed detectors that contained photoelectric sensors. To do otherwise would place my family at risk. Why have a whole house wired with alarms, all connected together and in every room, if the system doesn't do what it was designed to do, which is to wake us up before we're dead?

A few observations that might be helpful:

If you are replacing BRK model # 9120B, the existing wiring will plug right into this smoke detector. Just unplug the old, and plug in the new. That said, MAKE SURE TO DISCONNECT THE BREAKER SUPPLYING POWER TO YOUR DETECTORS before unplugging them. And these are a huge pain to unplug. They require that you pry on the tab locking the plug in place with a flat-bladed screwdriver, while at the same time pulling the plug. This is very difficult to do while standing on a ladder. It almost requires three hands... one to hold onto the detector (because it's hanging by the wires so you have no leverage), one to hold onto the screwdriver while prying so the plug can be released from the tab locking it in place, and a third hand to pull the plug. Whoever designed this was clueless. It should be much easier to unplug, such as a tab that can be pushed back with your thumb.

Another HUGE design flaw... The geniuses at BRK decided to change the connecting ring so you will not be able to use the old one. The problem with this is that you will be required to remove the old retaining ring - the plastic ring that is attached to the ceiling and that the alarm twists into - and install the new one. Someone else posted that this was easy. Don't believe it. Why? First, the original retaining ring will almost surely be stuck to the paint. Screw anything plastic tightly against a painted surface for several years and it will stick to the paint - sometimes VERY tightly so that it must be pried off. And when it comes off it will almost surely take some of the paint with it. Second... the geniuses at BRK decided to make the new rings SMALLER in diameter than the old rings! So what you're left with is this: If any paint comes off, it will show. And if the previous owner of the house painted around the alarms (not under them), you'll end up with an unpainted ring about a quarter of an inch wide all the way around the new ring, and that will show - big time. If they were going to replace the ring they should have made it at least equal in diameter to the rings on other models.

To remove the old retaining rings you will need to loosen two screws that are screwed into the electrical box. You don't want to take them all the way out - just back them out a bit, pry off the old ring (because it will probably be stuck to the paint), put on the new ring, and tighten the two screws back up. The new ring WILL fit under the two screws. It's a tight fit, but it does work. Before you start you might want to check and be sure what type of screw is holding the existing ring in place. I got on the ladder expecting a Phillips screw. It was a square.

The alarms seem to work fine. We haven't had any false alarms. If you do have false alarms it's my understanding that power issues can cause that, especially at night. We did have a few false alarms two years ago with our old alarms. We installed a whole house surge suppressor at our electrical panel. I can't be sure this fixed it, but we haven't had any problems since.

These alarms have the manufacture date stamped on the back. I found that the alarms purchased at Amazon were fresher than those purchased at a big-box store. I bought these in early November, and the oldest were manufactured in September, but most were manufactured in October. Locally they were 6-8 months old.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on February 7, 2013
I bought four of these to replace existing contractor-grade Ion detectors, because the PE feature is so much quicker to alarm with even small amounts of smoke. A bit more expensive, but how do you put a price on peace of mind? The mounting brackets were easy to install, and the low profile design makes them disappear against the ceiling.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on November 11, 2012
Great help pre-sale from Smoke Alert. Very fast shipping. Bought two dual smoke detectors plus a smoke/carbon monoxide sensor. Kits included batteries and conversion wiring harnesses. Less than 30 minutes to upgrade to a system providing complete protection.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 27, 2014
Installed easily. Units are brand new -- Feb 2014 manufactured date. I was replacing very old BRK 1839Ns and 1839NW models that came with the house. Called BRK, they told me the compatible replacements. One caveat, I only replaced 3 of 4 on our system (forgot there was one in the laundry room when I placed the order). When I powered the circuit, all the alarms went off as if there were an active alarm. I tripped the circuit breaker, removed the old unit, capped the lines, and re-powered the system. Worked and tested as advertised. Ordered one more 3120B for the laundry room. Just like every project, there is always more than one trip to the store.
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