Building Owner’s Responsibilities

  • Install a smoke alarm hardwired into the building electrical system with a battery for emergency backup power, OR install a smoke alarm which is powered by a non-replaceable, non-removable battery that is capable of powering the smoke alarm for a minimum of ten years. The battery for the hardwired AC Voltage is not required to be a 10-year battery.
  • Replace the battery in all smoke alarms each time the lease is renewed or once a year, whichever period of time is shorter, or as recommended by the manufacturer.
  • Replace broken, damaged, or missing smoke alarms with smoke alarms that meet these stated requirements.
  • Provide all tenants with the manufacturer’s maintenance and testing instructions.
  • Provide tenants with fire safety educational materials, as prescribed by the Fire Chief, each time a lease is renewed and at least once every 12 months for every continuing tenant.
  • Have your tenants review, complete, and sign an Owner & Tenant Agreement per Madison General Ordinance 32.06(4).

When notified of a broken, damaged, or missing smoke alarm, building owners have five days to repair or replace the alarms. Any battery-powered alarms found to be inoperable shall be replaced by the owner with smoke alarms that meet the requirements in MGO 34.907(2)(a).

Tenant's Responsibilities

Important Reminders

All smoke alarms should be replaced every ten years unless the manufacturer specifies a different service life. No person shall tamper with, remove, alter, damage, or otherwise render any smoke alarm inoperable. Dwelling units and properties may not be occupied, used, or rented if it does not comply with Madison General Ordinance 34.907, “Fire Alarm and Detection Systems.” Failure to comply with this ordinance may result in a maximum fine of $187 for the first violation.