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The name’s a mouthful to be sure, but Kidde delivers a lot with its smoke/carbon monoxide alarm that incorporates a basic air quality monitor. Let’s take this one step by step.
To start, this is a combination smoke and carbon monoxide detector, identical in function to the Kidde Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm I reviewed in August. It looks nearly identical to that unit—and to older Kidde units—and it also fits perfectly into older mounting rings and existing Kidde interconnect wiring.
Like the standard alarm, this unit is only available in hardwired form; there is no battery-powered option. If you have (red) interconnect wiring, the unit will work in tandem with other smoke detectors, but it does not support wireless interconnectivity. A sealed lithium-ion battery gives the device backup power for its 10-year usable lifespan.
Audible alerts are loud and quick to go off when smoke is detected, and the Kidde app allows you to get electronic alerts via push notification, SMS, email, or a combination of the three.
What sets this model apart from its sibling is that it also functions as an air quality monitor. This feature is entirely app-based—there are no indicators on the device itself—reporting on three quality parameters: Temperature, relative humidity, and TVOC levels (total volatile organic compounds).
The first two readings are largely a matter of personal comfort, but the third can impact your overall health. Measured in parts per billion (ppb), the TVOC monitor counts below 500 as “good,” below 1,500 as “moderate,” below 2,500 as “bad,” and above that “very bad.” As I write this, my TVOC count of 374 ppb seems fine, but Kidde categorizes my overall air quality as “moderate” due to its relative humidity reading of 54 percent. The cutoff for a “good” rating is 49 percent relative humidity.
Note that while the smoke/CO alarm element of the device works right out of the box (once connected to power, that is), you’ll need to give the air quality system four days to calibrate before it begins offering actionable results.
Installing the system is identical to other Kidde Smart Detection devices: Install the Kidde app and turn on Bluetooth. Scan a QR code and connect it to your Wi-Fi network (2.4GHz networks only). Alert incidents can be tracked in a timeline tab, and air quality measurements are kept in a history section for a full year. Mobile phone alerts can also be set to be delivered if any of the three air quality measurements slips into “very bad” status—although given that the “very bad” temperature range is below 48 degrees and above 92, things could be by the time you get the alert.
As with Kidde’s other devices, there’s support for both Alexa and Google Assistant, but you can use voice commands only to check current conditions. Kidde cannot relay an alarm message to an Amazon Echo or a Google Nest smart speaker or display, but those devices can listen for the sound of any smoke or CO alarm sounding off—glass breaking, too—and send you an alert. That feature, however, requires you to pay for an Alexa Guard or Nest Aware subscription.
As with the Kidde Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm, this product is a Home Depot exclusive. It currently retails for $90, a $20 upgrade over the standard smoke/CO detector. That’s not a huge upcharge, but the additional features don’t seem to add a whole lot to the experience. Perhaps if the unit offered a particulate matter monitor in addition to the more nebulous TVOC the upgrade calculus might be a little more obvious.
Best Prices Today: Kidde Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm with Indoor Air Quality Monitor