Pūoho auahi

Smoke alarms

When applying for a building consent for a new home or alterations and additions to an existing home (e.g. installing a wood burner), you will also need to get smoke alarms installed. A code compliance certificate will not be issued if smoke alarms are not installed.


Smoke alarms may be battery powered and they do not need to be interconnected. They need to have:

  • A 60 second minimum hush facility. A hush facility is a button on the smoke alarm that silences the alarm for a limited time after it has been activated. This allows the cause of a nuisance alarm to be cleared without removing the battery to silence the alarm.
  • An alarm test facility.

To ensure your smoke alarm remains effective we recommended you clean it annually with a vacuum and test the alarm every month.



Smoke alarm.


To meet building code requirements smoke alarms need to be installed on or near the ceiling:

  • within three metres of the door to every bedroom. Smoke alarms must be loud enough to wake sleeping occupants on the other side of the door.
  • on every escape route such as stairs or a long passageway.

Having a smoke alarm in every bedroom offers superior protection but is not a building code requirement.