REVIEW – Thinking about the technology in my home, most gadgets are here for convenience, entertainment, or comfort. There are very few that can save lives. No home should be without working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and X-Sense’s SC07-W interconnected alarms fill the job with Gadgeteer finesse!
What is it?
X-Sense model SC07-W sounds an alarm on multiple wirelessly connected units if smoke or dangerous carbon monoxide levels are detected in interior structures.
What’s in the box?
- Alarm units (multi-packs available)
- Mounting brackets (one for each unit)
- Mounting screws
- Wall anchor plugs
- User manual
- Carbon monoxide safety stickers
- Model: SC07-W
- Power supply: 10-year sealed lithium battery (non-replaceable) based on weekly testing. If the operation mode changes to an alarm condition, the battery life decreases accordingly.
- Sensor type: Smoke – photoelectric, carbon monoxide (CO) – electrochemical
- Safety standards: UL217 and UL2034
- CO sensitivity:
- 70 ppm for 60-240 minutes
- 150 ppm for 10-50 minutes
- 400 ppm for 4-15 minutes
- Operating temperature: 40 to 100°F (4.4 to 37.8°C)
- Operating relative humidity: 10 to 85% non-condensing
- Alarm loudness: ≥85dB at 10 feet (3 meters) @ 3.2±0.3 kHz pulsing alarm
- Silence duration: 9 minutes
- Operating frequency: 915 MHz
- Maximum number of interconnected units: 24, only compatible with X-Sense wireless alarms
- Transmission range: over 820 feet (250 meters) in open air
Design and features
A three-pack of X-Sense SC07-W alarms arrives in a strong box.
The packaging is light but protects the contents well.
X-Sense includes several warning labels that should be completed with phone numbers to call in an emergency.
The body of each unit weighs about 9.7 ounces and is about five inches in diameter and two inches thick.
Power is provided by a non-replaceable lithium battery that should protect your home for about 10 years, but if it goes off a lot, battery life will decrease.
Why a 10-year battery? You wouldn’t drive around on bald tires or bad brakes in your car, would you? Of course not! With smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, internal components can age and cause sensitivity degradation, so it makes sense to replace them for continued protection. The same goes for all those old ones that you’ve had since the Punic Wars. As a bonus, the X-Sense SC07-Ws don’t need to be fed every year! Heck, not needing to annually lug the ladder and precariously perch to replace bad batteries is peachy!
It’s a good idea to write the installation date on the body somewhere and maybe even put a reminder on your phone. X-Sense includes one on each SC07-W.
The battery doesn’t start discharging until being placed on the base – there’s a switch that engages to apply power. This is a good design and should keep the cells fresh until you’re ready for installation, just don’t wait too long 🙂 (batteries always have some level of self-discharge). Once placed on the base, the SC07-W stays activated, even if detached. The switch can also be used to deactivate the alarm at the end of its 10-year life, but don’t be tempted to test it because it will permanently disable the detector.
I suspect smoke and carbon monoxide detectors have minimal controls to prevent blockheads like me from fiddling with them ;-). Each SC07-W has a single button that wakes up the display with a single tap, holding for testing, or if it’s currently sounding an alarm, silencing the tooth-jarring alarm for nine minutes.
Above the button is a multicolor LED indicator that flashes green once a minute to indicate power is on, yellow to indicate a fault condition, or red when sounding an alarm.
A backlit LCD screen provides the current carbon monoxide level in PPM (Parts Per Million), battery level, passed test, and end-of-life status.
Installation and setup
The base should be attached to a suitable indoor surface. X-Sense provides screws and wall anchors.
Unlike stand-alone smoke detectors, The X-Sense SC07-Ws can be wirelessly networked so that if one senses an alert, all of them will sound the alarm. It’s not a difficult process – attach the alarms to the bases, tap one of the buttons four times and a beep will sound and the red LED will flash slowly indicating it’s in pairing mode. On the other unit, tap the button twice. It will chirp and the LED will also flash. Once they connect, both will bleep again. Repeat the process to add up to 22 more (24 total). Impressive!
To test the network, tap the button on one of the units. Tapping again will test the single unit, but holding will trigger all of the connected units and flash red and green lights after five seconds. This is an outstanding feature, especially if you have a large house, a loved one who is hard of hearing, or want to monitor a detached garage or shed. Excellent job, X-Sense!
I tested the smoke detection using a puff of smoke from an extinguished candle and a smoldering paper towel and found that even small levels of smoke will trigger an alarm. I don’t have a safe mechanism for testing CO levels, but I’m confident X-Sense will perform admirably.
What I like
- Interconnected home smoke and carbon monoxide protection
- X-Sense offers one, three, and six packs
- 10-year battery life means no climbing on ladders for a while
What I’d change
Some years ago, I was running errands when I received a panicked phone call from my daughters telling me the carbon monoxide detector was going off. I told them to grab the cat, get out of the house, and call 911. An emergency crew arrived a few minutes later and used equipment to determine one of the stove burners was partially blocked. The CO levels in the house would have resulted in unconsciousness in another few minutes and… I shudder to think of what could have happened had the detector not been working. Please, dear Gadgeteer friends, don’t pass go, don’t collect $200, and, don’t wait to get smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your home, apartment, hovel, or shack NOW. X-Sense SC07-W Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms do a splendid job with a robust palate of features, long battery life, and interconnectivity. Thank you, X-Sense!
Price: $45 and up depending on the number of sensors
Where to buy:
- X-Sense: single pack- $45.99, three pack- $125.99, six pack- $239.99
- Amazon: single pack- $40.49, three pack- $129.99, six pack- $212.49 (save 15% OFF discount code: ZYR3FVK2 )
Source: The sample for this review was provided by X-Sense.