Do Bathrooms Have Smoke Detectors?

A smoke detector can detect any kind of smoke around the specific area it has been installed and acts as a protection tool. It is also an indicator of fire buildup in the house and can save you from worse situations.

Do Bathrooms Have Smoke Detectors? You should not install a smoke detector in the bathroom because of the steam accumulation and safety issues. It is hard to maintain and expensive, depending on the type of detector and the location. Photoelectric and Ionization detectors are the two types of smoke detectors that work efficiently in different situations.

It is usually not recommended to have smoke detectors in the bathroom, and installing them within 3-4 feet or 35-36 inches from a door to the bathroom is better.

However, many hotel bathrooms have this device that produces sound when it detects smoke and alerts the hotel staff because they have their rules for the safety of guests and the staff.

Why should the bathroom not have a smoke detector?

It is better not to have this device in the bathroom due to the following reasons explained here.

Steam accumulation

The bathroom is the place that is more likely to have temperature fluctuations due to the hot and cold showers and the constant humidity present there. Still, the humidity level can vary depending on the ventilation in this place.

The steam and condensation after a hot shower can accumulate and cause a false alarm triggering.

This can cause serious disturbance in your house, as you have to leave all the work and run to see what happened in your place.

Although steam is different from smoke, when the water vapors accumulate and become dense enough, it detects it and triggers an alarm.

Not safe

According to the building regulation codes, it is better to avoid installing this device in damp and moist areas, such as the bathroom.

You have to think twice before putting any electrical device in a wet environment because it causes safety problems in the future if the water vapors collect inside it, and the risk of fire or short circuit increases.

It can use batteries to work or connect to the AC electric power directly in the house, and it can also work through the AC power and have batteries to store energy as a backup system.

You can install it in your living room, bedroom, or near any place you sleep because there are no humidity and water vapors, which can affect its performance. You can also consult a professional to guide you about the safe place to install them.

Hard to maintain

The device is hard to maintain, especially when installed in a bathroom, because the moisture can cause mold and bacteria to collect near it, which look nasty and also influence its working.

The dust and dirt particles can accumulate in it, which makes it more sensitive and trigger false alarms.

Sometimes, it causes the alarm to stop working due to lose connections and improper plug-in links.

It is usually mounted on the ceiling or near it; therefore, you cannot vacuum or clean it daily because it requires proper time to do this task, and you can often do this on the weekend.


The device can save you from many accidents and alarming situations and form a sensitive system to detect fumes and fire; therefore, it is more expensive with the installation cost.

The electrician can cost more, depending on the location you want to install the device, because if he has to take the ladder up and down, the electrician can demand it according to the hard work it takes to mount it.

Moreover, it also depends on the material of the ceiling, the type of detector, and the number of alarms you want to mount in your house.

It can cost more if you want to install more than one alarm in your place, such as in the living room and one or two bedrooms.

Which type of smoke detector can you install near the bathroom?

Different types of smoke detectors are available to provide security and protection against any mishap or emergency, and three of them are explained here.

Photoelectric detector

The photoelectric detector is also known as the photo-optical or optical detector and is the most commonly used device in houses.

It can detect smoldering fires and smoke particles from burning bedding, carpets, cigarette smoke, and upholstery.

It has a light source that aims into the sensing chamber at some angle, and the light reflects into the light sensor when smoke enters the sensing chamber, which triggers the device and alarm to start making noise.

The LED light in the light-sensing chamber deflects the light from its straight path when fumes enter this chamber, and the light deflects into the different photo-sensor chambers, which causes the sensors to produce sound.

Ionization detector

Ionization detectors are the most efficient type of smoke alarm that can detect quick fire in the house, including flammable liquids, paper, wood, and other flames around the fire attracted things.

This device is considered quicker and more competent than the optical alarm due to the fast indication of fire.

It works by using radioactive material, ionizing the air between the two positively and negatively charged plates, and producing current inside the sensing chamber.

The smoke enters the chamber through the vent and interrupts the distribution of charges inside it, and the current inside it changes, which is detected by the sensor.

This causes the sensors to produce noise and gives you an alarm about the fire around this area. 

How to maintain a smoke detector in a bathroom?

Proper maintenance can make the smoke detector last for more than 9-10 years because it is a sensitive device and needs good care to work efficiently.

In addition, you can change the batteries of this device after 11-12 months to make it work properly for a long time.

Ensure to carefully read the instruction while installing the device because a loose connection can cause false alarms and create panic.

You can test it by using the testing button installed in it after a few days to ensure it is working and can produce sound in an emergency.

You can replace it if it is not working after changing the batteries because there can be damage to the internal parts due to insects or dust accumulation.

Do not install it near the windows, ducts, and doors because the draft can interrupt the performance of this device.

You can vacuum or clean the device after a few days to avoid the accumulation of dust, grime, and moisture inside its parts.

However, avoiding painting, applying stickers, and putting decorations on the detector is better because it will influence the work.

You can select a detector with flashlights or vibrations if you have a disabled person in your house who cannot see or hear alarming sounds.

Interconnecting all the alarms in your place provides more protection and safety and ensures they are from the same company or brand.

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