SMOKE ALARM LEGISLATION – AS OF SEPTEMBER 2016

The details below is intended to inform consumers and installers of the latest legislation regarding smoke alarms in Australia. Should there be any changes to the legislation, PSA will endeavour to keep the information here as current as possible. If any changes in smoke alarm laws occur, it is often formally announced and given sufficient time to be mandated. Subscribe to our mailing list at the bottom of the page to be kept informed.

In all states across Australia, smoke alarms complying with Australian Standards AS3786 must be fitted in all residential and rental properties and in accordance with the Building Code of Australia. Please see below for individual State requirements.

AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY

All homes built since 1994 are required to have mains powered smoke alarms installed.

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NEW SOUTH WALES

At least one working smoke alarm installed on each level of a home. This includes owner occupied, rental properties, relocatable homes, caravans or any other residential building where people sleep. This has been the law since 1 May 2006 and can include hard-wired or battery powered smoke alarms.

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NORTHERN TERRITORY

As of 1 November 2011, all residential properties must have a working smoke alarm. If you are a home owner and already have a working ionisation smoke alarm installed, you do not have to change to a photoelectric smoke alarm until one of the following occurs:

  • Your smoke alarm ceases to work – you’ll need to replace it with either a hardwired 240 volt photoelectric smoke alarm with a 9 volt battery back up OR a photoelectric smoke alarm with a sealed 10 year lithium battery
  • you sell your home;
  • you rent out your premises or renew a tenancy; or
  • you hire out your caravan or movable dwelling
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QUEENSLAND

From January 1, 2017 every Queensland residence will need to be fitted with photoelectric, interconnected smoke alarms in all bedrooms, as well as hallways of residences.

Any smoke alarm being replaced after January 1, 2017 must be a photoelectric smoke alarm.

All houses being built or significantly renovated will need to comply with the smoke alarm legislation upon completion after January 1, 2017.

All houses leased or sold will need to meet compliance after five years and all owner-occupied private dwellings will need to comply with the legislation within 10 years.

These smoke alarms must be:

  • 240V mains powered interconnected photoelectric smoke alarms
  • Photoelectric smoke alarms that are powered by a sealed 10-year lithium battery and have the capability to wirelessly interconnect between each alarm
  • Approved to AS3786:2014

Smoke Alarms installed in Queensland after 1st January 2017 must be AS3786:2014 compliant with some exceptions; Building approvals issued before 1 Jan 2017 and in non-regulatory installation can continue to use AS3786:1993 compliant products.

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SOUTH AUSTRALIA

Homes or residential rental properties purchased before 1 February 1998 are required to fit a replaceable battery powered smoke alarm.

Homes or residential rental properties purchased on or after 1 February 1998 requires a smoke alarm (or smoke alarms) to be fitted within six months from the day on which the title is transferred and be either:

  • 240 volt, mains powered smoke alarm
  • a 10 year life, non-replaceable, non-removable, permanently connected battery powered smoke alarm.

Homes or residential rental properties built on or after 1 January 1995, the Building Code of Australia requires a 240 volt mains powered smoke alarm.

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TASMANIA

From 1 May 2013, all Tasmanian residential rental properties must be fitted with smoke alarms.
From 1 May 2013 until 30 April 2016, smoke alarms can be battery (by either 9-volt removable battery or a 10 year non-removable battery) powered, or mains powered, provided it complies with AS3786-1993.
From 1 May 2016, smoke alarms will be required to be either mains powered or 10 year non-removable battery powered alarms.

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VICTORIA

All homes constructed after 1 August 1997 must have mains powered smoke alarms.
Homes before 1 August 1997 must have a battery operated smoke alarm.
From 1 May 2014, building regulations require all homes, apartments and residential buildings have interconnected smoke alarms.

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WESTERN AUSTRALIA

Since 1997, mains power smoke alarms must be installed in new properties and any existing properties that have undergone significant renovations.

From 1 October 2009, mains powered smoke alarms must be fitted in all existing residential buildings prior to sale and when a new tenancy agreement is signed for rental properties. If there are no tenancy changes in rental properties, then mains powered smoke alarms must be fitted by 1 October 2011.

New dwellings approved for constructions on and from 1 May 2014 will require interconnection of smoke alarms.

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