Fire Alarm Systems
Fire alarm systems are economical and critical yet so many homes and commercial buildings don't have them. The fire system works separately from the security system, if installed, and the alarm sound is distinctly different so that the occupants will know the difference between the two. In addition, the systems we install will notify the local fire department in the event of a fire. The advantage over standard smoke detectors is that no one has to be present to notify the fire department in case of a fire. Whether present or not, the few minutes gained by an automated system notifying the fire department as soon as a fire begins can mean the difference between having minimal smoke and fire damage or a total loss of property and contents!
Many items in residential houses have sentimental value that cannot be replaced such as old family photos and heirlooms. Many small businesses have file cabinets containing one copy of critical documents and computers with financial and/or employee data yet no off-site backup. The small cost of a fire system is far outweighed by the value of these irreplaceable items.
We also use residential or commercial fire wire to connect the fire system components.
We install two types of fire systems:
Residential Fire Alarm Systems
Typically, we install two smoke detectors: one outside the master bedroom and one in a hallway where the guest bedrooms are unless all of the bedrooms are in the same part of the house. In the latter case, the second smoke detector is installed near the kitchen where a fire is more likely to start. In a two-story house, a third smoke detector is installed upstairs near the bedrooms. In the attic or any where hot water heaters and H/VAC systems are located, we generally install heat detectors to warn of a fire that could not be detected with a smoke detector which are located in open living areas. Some insurance companies will give a 5% discount for this type of fire system installed in the home. The savings of such a system over several years could equal the small cost of the system itself.
Commercial/Small Industrial Fire Systems
In commercial and small industrial buildings, we use a special fire panel. It has a built-in power transformer. Therefore, 110 voltage conduit must be wired directly to the panel by an electrician. We also use a special keypad that is red in color to distinguish it from the security system keypad.Most exterior doors have a "pull station "nearby so that the system could be manually triggered in an emergency. We can also install a connector to the flow switch (if installed) of a sprinkler system. If water begins to flow through the sprinkler system, the fire alarm system is triggered. Audiovisual Horn Strobes, usually red, are wired to the system and placed in strategic areas to notify occupants of an alarm. In bathrooms, a visual-only strobe may be used to alert the hearing impaired. We usually also install a relay to turn-off the HVAC system so that it does not circulate smoke to the rest of the building.