Aug 17, 2014
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CookWell

Make great food, not burnt food

Make Fire Safety a Priority in the Kitchen

Everyone enjoys a home-cooked meal. But whether you are preparing a feast or re-warming last night’s leftovers, it’s important to take some basic precautions to avoid turning a quiet meal into a devastating house fire.

Preventing cooking fires can be relatively simple. Here are some ideas to make your kitchen safer:

  • Keep cooking areas free of combustible materials, such as potholders, packaging, and paper towels.
  • Don’t wear loose clothing that can dangle onto a burner and catch fire.
  • Don’t leave food unattended while it cooks.
  • Don’t consume alcohol while cooking. Being even moderately impaired may inhibit response time if a fire breaks out.
  • Keep a kitchen fire extinguisher, such as Quell’s 1 kg unit, suitable for cooking fat/oil fires inside of a kitchen cabinet and a 1 metre x 1 metre fire blanket.
  • Read the instructions and know how to use your extinguisher and fire blanket before a fire breaks out.
  • Check the pressure gauge on your extinguisher monthly to ensure it is charged and ready to use.
  • Only use a fire extinguisher if the fire is small and self-contained. Be sure to notify the fire department before extinguishing the fire.
  • Fire blankets may be used to extinguish small cooking fires and clothing fires.
  • Keep a list of emergency numbers close by.
  • Keep children and pets away from cooking areas by creating a one metre “safe zone” around the stove.
  • Turn pot handles inward to prevent spills.
  • Keep cooking appliances clean to prevent grease build-up, which can ignite if heated directly.
  • Never pour water onto a cooking oil fire.
  • If there is an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed to prevent the flames from escaping.
  • Never put metal objects into a microwave. If a microwave fire occurs, keep the door closed and unplug the unit immediately.
  • Develop and practice an escape plan with your entire family. Plan two exit routes from each room, including the kitchen. Practice your escape plan at different times of the day and specify a meeting place outside.

And don’t forget to call 000 in the event of a kitchen fire, even if you have extinguished the flames.

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Product Recall

On 11 April 2018, Quell announced a recall to replace one model of Quell dual sensor (photoelectric / ionization) smoke alarm – model number QPI9010, manufactured between 10th September 2016 and 13th October 2017

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DEFECT: In some products a yellow protective cap may have been left on one of the two smoke sensors during the manufacturing process.

HAZARD: The yellow protective cap compromises the smoke alarm’s ability to detect smoke, which can increase the risk of injury and/or property damage in the event of a fire.

WHAT TO DO: Using the guide provided, visually inspect the product through the opening on the side of the alarm for the presence of a yellow cap. If a yellow cap is present, immediately contact Quell for further instructions and to receive a free replacement smoke alarm. DO NOT remove or return the affected smoke alarm until after receiving and installing the replacement
alarm.

DOWNLOADS

Quell Dual Sensor Identification Guide

Quell Dual Sensor Recall FAQs

Quell Dual Sensor Recall Advertisement

Consumers can call us toll-free at 1800 654 435 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. AEST Monday through Friday, or e-mail us at quell-recall@chubb.com.au if you believe you have an affected product.

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Replace your smoke alarm every 10 years

Did you know that the sensitivity of smoke alarms can decrease over time? In some Australian States it is also a requirement to replace your smoke alarm every 10 years.

An outdated or faulty smoke alarm may just be as dangerous as having no smoke alarm at all. Being unprotected from the possibility of a fire is a risk Quell hopes no family has to face.

To know when your smoke alarm was manufactured, look for a batch number, which is typically printed near the battery compartment. For example, a batch number of 2417 indicates that the product was manufactured in the 24th week of 2017. All Quell alarms have a date of manufacture printed clearly on the base.

Some other handy tips to maintaining your smoke alarm include:

  • Clean and vacuum your smoke alarm at least every 6 months. This will help nuisance alarms caused by dust or other contaminants.
  • Test your alarm after installing new batteries – simply press the test button.
  • Replace your smoke alarm battery at least once a year, typically at daylight saving time.

Smoke Alarm State Legislation

Australian laws requires all residential property owners to install at least one smoke alarm on each floor of the property however the exact requirements vary from state to state.

Not sure what your legal requirements are? Click on the handy links below to check.

Working smoke alarms are the only smoke alarms that can save lives and property, and it is important they are maintained properly. Why not check your smoke alarm today.

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Rewind, Replace, Relax when daylight saving ends on 1 April 2018

This Sunday, 1 April 2018 as daylight saving ends, we remind families to check their smoke alarms and replace any expired smoke alarms in their homes.

It is recommended that smoke alarms are replaced after 10 years. To know when your smoke alarm was manufactured, look for a batch number, which is typically printed near the battery compartment. A batch number of 2406 indicates that the product was manufactured in the 24th week of 2006. Quell alarms have a date of manufacture printed clearly on the base, while some manufacturers now place the expiry date on the smoke alarm.

Working smoke alarms are the only smoke alarms that can save lives and property, and it is important they are maintained properly.

So this weekend – Rewind your clock, Replace your batteries on your Quell smoke alarm and Relax with family and loved ones.

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House Fire Victim Shares Her Story

Only working smoke alarms help save lives.

Linda Buchan knows this too well. In 1998, then 18-year-old Ms Buchman did not have a smoke detector in her home when a heater sparked a fire in her bedroom. She suffered inhalation injuries including brain damage. Her sister died.

Fire and Rescue NSW has teamed up with house fire survivor Linda ­Buchan to make a video that encourages residents to install photoelectric smoke alarms.

See Linda’s story here.

(Source: Herald Sun, 26 June 2016)

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Why Is My Smoke Alarm Beeping

The smoke alarm will chirp at a regular interval, about once every minute, when the battery is weak and needs to be replaced. Replace with a fresh 9 Volt battery. Quell Alarms are certified to be used with the models of batteries specified in the user manual. Once the battery is replaced, the beeping or chirping should stop. If the unit chirps at seemingly random times or at random intervals after replacing the battery, check for the following conditions:

1) The battery may be loose, or improperly installed.

Make sure the battery is fresh, and that it is snapped in all the way so it cannot be shaken loose. It’s possible that battery connections may not be making good contact with the battery. Disconnecting and re-connecting the battery once or twice will likely fix this condition.

2) The smoke alarm cover may be dirty.

Dust and insects can collect in the sensing chamber of the alarm. An accumulation of dust in the sensing chamber can cause the unit to chirp. It is good practice to clean the smoke alarm when you change the battery.

Cleaning smoke alarms:

Remove the alarm from the wall or ceiling and hold the unit on its side. There is a gap between the front cover and the back plate. Take a vacuum cleaner with a crevice tool and clean all around the gap area. Pay most attention to the sensor, which you will see in the gap area. The sensor looks like a small tin can with slots in it for ionisation alarms and a black cylinder for photoelectric alarms. This needs to be thoroughly cleaned since dust or insects may be caught in the sensor.

3) Reset the alarm.

Most current model smoke alarms have a processor that retains certain error conditions, such as a weak battery. The error condition should reset when the battery is replaced but sometimes it does not and must be manually reset to clear the error.

To reset an AC unit with a battery backup:

Turn off the power to the smoke alarm at the circuit breaker. Remove the smoke alarm from the mounting bracket and disconnect the power. Remove the battery. Press and hold the test button for at least 15 seconds. The unit may chirp or alarm for a few seconds before going silent. Reconnect the power and reinstall the battery. The unit will chirp once when the power is restored and should not chirp afterwards.”

To reset a DC only unit:

Remove the battery. Press and hold the test button for at least 15 seconds. The unit may chirp or alarm for a few seconds before going silent. Reinstall the battery. The unit will chirp when the battery is first connected but should not chirp afterwards.

4) An electrical condition may be causing the power to the unit to be interrupted. If the AC power to the unit is interrupted, the unit will chirp when the power is restored. This could be caused by power surges.

If the chirping seems to occur at about the same time in the evening or morning, it could be due to a surge created when the power company switches electrical grids to meet demand.

Check to see if the chirp (or chirping) occurs when something else in the house is turned on such as an exhaust or attic fan, a heater, etc. If the smoke alarm is connected to a circuit with such a device, the alarm may chirp when the other device is switched on. If this is the case and the device is plugged into a wall outlet, move it to another outlet on a different circuit. If it is a hardwired device, have an electrician investigate it.

5) Replace the alarm.

If none of these conditions exist and the suggestions don’t alleviate the symptom, the smoke alarm should be replaced. Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. Quell smoke alarms have a 10-year warranty from date of purchase. A date code stamped on the label attached to the back of the unit. If the unit is within warranty, please contact Quell on 1800 654 435 or email quellconsumer.com.au or send it to the following address for warranty repair or replacement:

Chubb Fire & Security Pty Ltd
Quell Division
33-39 Talavera Road
Macquarie Park, NSW 2113

Quell smoke alarms can be purchased from most major retailers nationally, several with online businesses.

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SAFEGUARD YOUR HOME WITH QUELL

Quell is one of the most respected names in Fire & Safety in the Australian consumer market. A division of Chubb, the world-renowned fire safety and security company with over 100 years' experience, Quell's commitment to quality and product innovation is unparalleled.