HomeSafe Program & Smoke Alarms
Learn about Surrey's free smoke alarm installation and HomeSafe Inspection programs.
A working smoke alarm is one of the easiest, most cost-effective ways to protect your family in the event of a house fire. A working smoke alarm will increase your chances of surviving a house fire by 74%.
As outlined by the BC Ministry of Justice and Emergency Management’s Smoke Alarm Bulletin, under the British Columbia Fire Code, all dwellings are required to be protected by smoke alarms. This includes homes, and all sleeping rooms sometimes referred to as lodging or hotel rooms.
Free Smoke Alarm Installation Program
The Surrey Fire Service is committed to ensuring that all of the citizens of Surrey, especially our most vulnerable demographics, are protected by a functioning smoke alarm.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I have working smoke alarms in my home?
- Does my smoke alarm sound when I push the test button?
- Have I changed my smoke alarm(s) within the last 10 years?
If your answer to any of these questions is "no" and you live in a single-family home, duplex or townhouse, you can ask the Surrey Fire Service to install a free smoke alarm. This device will ensure that you and your family are protected until you can have your existing interconnected hard-wired alarms serviced by a professional electrician. Complete the form below and a member of the department will be in touch to schedule your smoke alarm installation.
If you are unsure of the status of your smoke alarms, you can request a free Homesafe Inspection. During the Homesafe Inspection, members of the Surrey Fire Service will:
- check your smoke alarms
- make cooking safety recommendations (cooking fire is one of the leading causes of fires in homes)
- check for safe use of electrical devices including extension cords and power bars
- discuss candle, matches and lighter safety
- go over your home fire escape plan
- cover a variety of fire and general safety topics
If your smoke alarms are not working, we will install a new alarm for free. At the end of the inspection, we will provide you with a written record of our findings and recommendations. This record is for your use only and does not carry any legal obligations.
- Request a Free Smoke Alarm or HomeSafe Inspection
- Request a Free Smoke Alarm or Homesafe Inspection (Punjabi)
Test Your Smoke Alarms
It is important to routinely test your smoke alarms to make sure they are working. Ensure your smoke alarms are working by following these best practices:
- Once a month, press the test button on your alarm to ensure that it still functioning.
- If your alarm is battery powered, change the batteries every six months.
- Every 10 years, replace your smoke alarms with new units. Even hardwired alarms need changing every decade.
Fire safety is everyone’s responsibility. Even if you live in a multi-residential building, be sure to test your alarms as fire can spread quickly between units. You can request a replacement smoke alarm from your landlord, building manager, unit owner or strata. When you work together both you and your neighbors are protected.
More information on safe cooking, safe barbequing and safe cigarette disposal is available in our Multi-Residential HomeSafe Brochure.
Recycling Smoke Alarms
Smoke alarms are not eligible for Surrey's curbside recycling program and not all recycling drop-off depots are equipped to accept them. Find the nearest smoke alarm recycling depot in Surrey through the Product Care Recycling website.
Preventing False Fire Alarms
False alarms occupy valuable and limited resources. Whenever the Surrey Fire Service arrives on scene due to a false alarm, firefighters must investigate to ensure there is no fire. While firefighters are attending a false alarm, they cannot be deployed at other incidents where they may be required. This may ultimately impact the health and safety of all Surrey residents.
False alarms also cause residents to ignore or disconnect their alarms, and can also cost you money. We ask everyone to take this matter seriously and learn how to reduce false alarms.
If you are considering installing a third-party fire and security alarm system, you should be aware of the following and discuss with the service provider before having the system installed:
If the system actively monitors for smoke or fire conditions, what is the process for the alarm monitoring company to notify the fire services?
Once notified, fire services will be dispatched to a call and will continue to respond and investigate even if updated by the alarm monitoring company that they feel it is a false alarm.
Fire false alarms are subject to cost recovery fees from property owners as outlined in the Surrey Security & Fire Bylaw No. 13168 (the "False Alarm Bylaw"). See below for more information.
Find out more information on how to prevent false alarms.
False Alarm Fees
The Surrey Fee-Setting Bylaw No. 14577 sets fees for administrative costs and municipal services, and outlines current rates for false alarms.
The Surrey Security & Fire Bylaw No. 13168 (the "False Alarm Bylaw"), and the bylaw outlining administrative costs, establishes fees and Fire Department responses to false fire alarm fees on a cost recovery basis.
This information relates only to false fire alarms. All other false alarm-related fees, such as security alarms, are separately administrated through Property and Payment Services.
We invoice for false fire alarms to:
- motivate owners to ensure their fire alarm systems are serviced, maintained, and in proper working order,
- modify behaviour that leads to false fire alarms; and
- recover the costs of attendance.
False Alarm Invoice Payment Options
- Online: my.surrey.ca/invoices
- In person: Surrey City Hall or Surrey Fire Service Hall 1 at 8767 132 Street, Surrey
- By mail: (Invoice or invoice number must be included with payment) 8767 132 Street, Surrey BC V3W 4P1
- By phone: Call 604-543-6780 to pay with your credit card
Any unpaid fees at December 31 will be transferred to Property Tax in arrears (interest charged on the outstanding amounts in arrears).
Appealing a False Fire Alarm Invoice
Once you pay your false alarm invoice, you can no longer dispute it. Any invoice disputes must be registered by emailing email@example.com within 45 days of the original invoice date. After the 45 days is over, the invoice will be considered final.