Can Shower Steam Set off a Smoke Alarm?

Fire detectors are an essential tool in many places where there is an elevated risk of fire accidents. Many smoke detectors are highly sensitive to rising levels of heat and humidity, and thus are triggered by temperature changes that are not really dangerous. Steam showers and saunas tend to increase the overall temperatures by heating up the room and making it more humid, and stand risks of being misinterpreted by smoke detectors as a fire threat.

Why are the detectors triggered by steam?

To understand why this occurs, one needs to understand the mechanics of the steam showers. Steam showers work on the principle of a boiler, which heats up a limited quantity of water to the desired temperatures, usually set higher than normal limits. The resultant output is that of a steam cloud, or a steam jet that sprays steam like a pressure cooker’s valve, only that the steam from the generator is greater. When the steam is let out, there are tiny droplets of hot water within the hot air, which increase the overall humidity content of the air. This is captured by the detecting system.

Are all alerts real?

Smoke detectors with a state of art sensors usually detect even minor variations in temperature, and tend to alert the system. Even though a few detectors ignore heat from the steam, many are trigrred by it, leading to false positive alarms. There is another possibility that smoke detectors are set off by steam when the detectors sensor tends to malfunction.

Smoke detectors are meant for the safety of the place in general. It is important to keep the temperature in control, as it is better to prevent any mishaps than endure losses.