Installing fire alarm systems can protect your business and your customers from a fire outbreak. It is legally mandatory in most places. But you have to choose the right system that fits your needs. Since there are a lot of alternatives in the market today, it is always best if you familiarise yourself with the different kinds of fire alarm systems available. Here are the different types of commercial fire alarm systems available in the market.
Addressable Fire Alarm System
Addressable fire alarm systems are advanced fire alarm systems that can find the exact location of the fire outbreak and send alert signals to the concerned people to take immediate action to put out the fire. It can reduce the number of false alarms. They are able to locate the source of fire more accurately than conventional fire alarm systems. They are a better choice for huge buildings with multiple storeys.
Components of an Addressable Fire Alarm System
There are multiple devices like heat detectors, smoke detectors, sprinkler systems and a control panel in addressable fire alarm systems. All these devices and the control panel are in constant communication with each other. They work together to make sure the building is safe and secure from a fire outbreak. They constantly check for signs of a fire outbreak and alerts if there is a fire in the building. Their special design enables them to locate the origin of the fire more precisely than its conventional alternative.
Basics of Designing – Addressable Fire Alarm System
The detectors and sensors are placed at multiple locations in the building. The constant communication between these devices makes it capable of identifying any fault in the line. When a detector identifies fire or smoke it sends the information to the control panel. Since each of these devices have an address which is known to the control panel, it can understand the point of origin of the fire. Thus we can prioritize which location needs immediate help.
Conventional Fire Alarm System
A conventional fire alarm system or a non-addressable fire alarm system is not that advanced but it is perfect for smaller buildings. Unlike addressable fire alarm systems, these show the zone in which the fire is detected. A zone covers a general area rather than the exact location. These are enough for smaller buildings since there would not be much areas to cover.
Components of Conventional Fire Alarm System
Conventional fire alarm systems have fire alarm initiating devices like sensors or manual initiation devices, fire notification devices and a control panel like addressable fire alarm systems. They are more simple in design and in the way they function.
Basics of Designing – Conventional Fire Alarm System
In conventional fire alarm systems the detectors in different zones of the building are connected to the control panel. But since the building is divided into zones the exact location of the fire may not be found. The system can identify the zones only. Therefore, it is recommended to place the detectors 30 feet apart. You should also keep in mind that this system is not recommended for large commercial buildings.
Wireless Fire Alarm System
A wireless fire alarm system is a convenient fire alarm system since it doesn’t have any physical connections between its various components. It can be easily installed and can be relocated if necessary. You can save some money in terms of wiring since they are wireless systems.
Components of Wireless Fire Alarm System
Wireless fire alarm systems consist of wireless sensors and detectors. These systems send and receive signals with the control panel wirelessly. They are also connected with each other using their wireless network. They are a quick and easy way to implement fire alarm systems since they don’t involve wiring.
Basics of Designing – Wireless Fire Alarm System
There are wireless fire alarm systems in which the detectors can be placed upto 30 meters apart. Even though they are wireless, they can be connected with an existing fire alarm system with ease as these systems are designed in such a way that it can be added to an existing network very easily. Therefore they can be used to expand an existing fire alarm system to cover a larger area.
Reference of Standards to be Followed
While installing a fire alarm system you should always make sure you are following the required standards during installation of a fire alarm system. The installation should be in compliance with the requirements put forward by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and National Building Code (NBC). These are meant for the safety of the people and therefore must be followed strictly.
The fire protection requirements of different types of building vary depending on a number of factors. Therefore when you plan to install a fire alarm system find the one that best meets your needs and get the best protection for your building and the people inside that building.