Smoke Detectors, the Radiactive Hazard of Smoke Detectors and Their Safe Disposal

Types of Smoke Detector
Safe Disposal of Smoke Detectors


Smoke detectors save lives, but in some smoke detectors dangers lie within. When considering household hazardous waste, the most dangerous could well be a humble, broken smoke detector.

Types of Smoke Detector

There are two types of smoke detector; optical detectors and ionization chamber detectors. Household ionization detectors contain a circuit board with a detection chamber. Inside the detection chamber is a radioactive foil. Although very small, the piece of radioactive foil presents a hazard to individuals.

Safe Disposal of Smoke Detectors

Although smoke detectors are normally disposed of in landfill, they should not be thrown out with general household waste. Local authorities and councils should be consulted on their particular preferred method of smoke detector disposal. In most cases the will put a bulk load of old smoke detectors in a special container, encase it with concrete and put this in a special area of the landfill.

Source: AZoCleantech

Tell Us What You Think

Do you have a review, update or anything you would like to add to this article?

Leave your feedback
Your comment type
Azthena logo powered by Azthena AI

Your AI Assistant finding answers from trusted AZoM content

Azthena logo with the word Azthena

Your AI Powered Scientific Assistant

Hi, I'm Azthena, you can trust me to find commercial scientific answers from

A few things you need to know before we start. Please read and accept to continue.

  • Use of “Azthena” is subject to the terms and conditions of use as set out by OpenAI.
  • Content provided on any AZoNetwork sites are subject to the site Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.
  • Large Language Models can make mistakes. Consider checking important information.

Great. Ask your question.

While we only use edited and approved content for Azthena answers, it may on occasions provide incorrect responses. Please confirm any data provided with the related suppliers or authors. We do not provide medical advice, if you search for medical information you must always consult a medical professional before acting on any information provided.

Your questions, but not your email details will be shared with OpenAI and retained for 30 days in accordance with their privacy principles.

Please do not ask questions that use sensitive or confidential information.

Read the full Terms & Conditions.