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The Basics of Fire Alarm Maintenance

Posted on: January 6, 2012

A well-installed and maintained fire alarm system of one of the keys to protecting people and property in your building. A poorly maintained fire alarm, however, can pose extreme safety hazards—and potentially be worse than not having a fire alarm system at all! As a business owner, you should have your fire alarm system inspected by a fire protection company once a year.

The following is a list of the most common steps of any fire alarm inspection:

Fire Alarm Inspection

Fire alarm maintenance begins with a visual inspection of your fire alarm system, where the technician will look for things like missing or damaged notifiers, pull stations, and other devices within your system, for alarm components located in the wrong places, parts of your system that use non-rated components, etc.

If possible, the technician may also review the original drawings and operations manuals of your fire alarm system.

Fire Alarm Maintenance – Testing

At Confires, we follow a rigorous fire alarm testing process to ensure your system keeps you safe at all times. During our test, we will:

  • Test the alarm control panel functions
  • Test smoke detectors
  • Clean all smoke detectors with nitrogen
  • Test all manual pull stations and heat detectors to make sure they interact properly with the alarm panel
  • Test and inspect all audible and visual devices to ensure that they are unobstructed and activate properly when required
  • Perform a random check of circuit supervision to ensure the fire alarm panel detects an open circuit
  • Load test stand-by batteries and check auxiliary functions, such as door or damper release
  • Test stand-by battery charger
  • If the alarm is monitored, verify the central station monitoring company received the appropriate signals
  • Test remote annunciator to verify it accurately portrays where the alarm exists in the protected premises
  • Test duct detectors and ensure proper unit shutdown, when necessary
  • Check any auxiliary devices, including door holders and duct dampers, to make sure they activate properly

In addition to the above services, we also provide NFPA-required sensitivity testing of smoke detectors every second year. This service is not included in the basic contract unless specifically stated and is available for an additional fee

Finally, we can test fire alarm devices located in the elevator shafts. In order for us to perform these tests, a representative from the elevator service company must be present to allow access to the shaft and to run the elevator car.

Fire Alarm Maintenance – Documentation

Upon the conclusion of fire alarm maintenance service, we will provide a record of any issues we may have found and make recommendations as to how they can be repaired. As a business owner, you are responsible for making our suggested repairs, and may be subject to fines if they are not performed (not to mention your building will not be safe!). Once the fire alarm inspection is complete, your technician will provide you with documentation of our process.

Fire alarm maintenance is one of the most important things you can do to protect life and property in your building. If you need service for your Delaware or New Jersey fire alarm, don’t wait – call Confires today!

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