Understanding the important components of a fire alarm

Understanding the important components of a fire alarm

A fire alarm system is made up of different electrical devices that work collectively to detect and inform people in the event of a fire or even other emergencies. Fire alarm Massachusetts has put up a guide to assist you in understanding all the elements of a fire detection alarm device & get the most out of this critical technology since fire alarm systems have gotten increasingly complex over the years.

A Brief Overview of Fire Alarm Systems

Since Francis Robbins Upton, a Thomas Edison collaborator, developed the first automated alarm system in 1890, alarm systems have advanced significantly. Twelve years later, George Andrew Darby in England invented the first heat & smoke detection devices, and battery-powered smoke alarms first emerged in 1965. Building rules have required the installation & usage of battery-powered smoke alarms since the 1980s.

How Do the Fire Alarm Systems Work? 

The primary function of a fire alarm system is to detect fires & rapidly warn both building inhabitants and emergency personnel from a strategically controlled & monitored location. These fire alarm Massachusetts systems also monitor themselves, recognizing the position & origin of the alarms & detecting faults with connections & wiring that may prevent the system from functioning properly. Fire detection systems primarily serve four purposes.

  • Alerts
  • Monitoring
  • Detection
  • Controlling

Fire Alarm Control Panel 

The fire alarm Massachusetts control panel, often known as the FACU, is the system’s “brain.” It receives signals from initiating devices, which are also called inputs, and then conducts the following functions.

Turning on notifications: When the FACU receives signals from the inputs, it activates the relevant notification devices, also called outputs. It notifies others in the area that an incident has happened.

Elevator recall: The FACU routinely recalls elevators, removing the danger of an elevator transporting passengers into a flame- and smoke-filled space.

The shutdown of the HVAC system: If smoke is detected in an air duct, several fire alarm circuits will shut down the air handling unit, preventing smoke from traveling to other sections of the building.

Notifying the alarm monitoring center: The FACU will also inform a distant alarm monitoring station, which will inform emergency services.

Minimizing False Alarms

A poorly constructed or installed fire detection system that is not subjected to periodic maintenance, testing, & inspection will most likely sound even when there is no true risk. People will take false alarms less seriously if they occur frequently. Many individuals feel a fire alarm isn’t a reason for worry unless they smell smoke and see flames.

The fire alarm installation Massachusetts has advocated for adequate system design, testing, installation, maintenance, & inspection to reduce the occurrence of false alarms.

Types of Fire Alarm Panels

There are two kinds of fire alarm systems: addressable & non-addressable.

  • Addressable: Addressable panels by fire alarm installation. Massachusetts monitors each alarm component separately. Each device has its unique address, which enables the panel to determine its condition, like whether it is operating correctly, on alert, or in difficulty. Addressable systems, for example, enable individuals working at a hotel’s front desk to determine the specific location of an occurrence by inspecting the alarm panel display.
  • Non-addressable: This sort of system groups all starting devices into zones, requiring users to physically examine each device within the zone to locate the one that is in alarm. For example, if you have a non-addressable system & the alarm goes off, it will say “Alarm Zone 3, Fourth Floor.”

Most property owners and managers choose addressable fire alarm installation Massachusetts systems because they allow you to pinpoint the exact position of the alert and examine the issue much more rapidly. Some fire alarm panels can also send notifications to distant alarm monitoring stations, which then can alert emergency services. Most state regulations prohibit the panels from contacting fire stations directly.

The 3 States of a Fire Alarm System 

The condition of the fire alarm system is continually monitored and indicated through fire alarm panels. There are three conceivable states for the vast majority of systems.

  • Normal: “Normal” signifies that all appliances, equipment, circuits, and wiring are operational & that no active alarms are present.
  • Alarm: This state indicates that an alert is activated.
  • Trouble: If an open, as well as short circuit, develop inside the circuits that link the initiating devices & the fire alarm panel, or whether the system’s phone line connection fails, the system will enter a “trouble” condition, which will be displayed on the control panel.

Initiation Devices

Alarms are initiated by initiation devices, which, like alarm panels, can be addressable & non-addressable. Water flow switches, for example, are normally non-addressable but link to addressable modules. Specific addresses can be assigned to the switches, allowing them to connect with addressable systems.

Pull Stations

You’re probably most familiar with the fire alarm system element known as a pull station. It’s a manually controlled gadget that sends out an alert when the handle is pulled. While smoke might take a couple of minutes to hit the smoke detector, a pull station may be activated within seconds of a fire and other emergencies, allowing for a speedier evacuation and faster response times by the fire department.

Pull station is available in a variety of sizes and forms and may be ordered with protective coverings. If you employ their services, they will take good care of your fire alarm inspection in Massachusetts.

Smoke Detectors 

A smoke detector is indeed a gadget that emits an alert when it detects smoke. These devices are classified into two types based on the type of sensor used to detect smoke molecules.

  • Lonization detectors: Between 2 electrically charged plates, these detectors contain trace amounts of radioactive material. Ions flow between these 2 charged plates. However, this is disrupted by smoke particles. The smoke detector sets off if this happens.
  • Photoelectric detectors: In their detecting chamber, photoelectric sensors emit LED light beams. When smoke particles enter this chamber, they disperse the light beam, diverting a portion of it onto the photoelectric sensor of the detector. The alert is triggered whenever the system senses this light. Proper installation and maintenance of this system by fire alarm inspection in Massachusetts can lead this system to work properly for a longer period.


The components of the fire alarm system must be maintained following the guidelines issued by fire alarm company in Massachusetts. The frequency with which you execute maintenance is determined by environmental factors as well as the type of device you have. The method you use to clean the system components is determined by their location as well as the manufacturer’s recommendations.

When you’re not there, our team of professionally trained agents monitors your business, and in the event of a security alert, fire alarm company Massachusetts takes fast action and contacts local law police and first responders if required. If you want an extra degree of security, fire alarm company Massachusetts may create a tailored security plan that involves onsite guard patrol & 24/7 standing watch alternatives to safeguard your workers, visitors, and business valuables. To get in touch with us, shoot a mail at info@bostonfirealarm.com or call at +1-508-494-7323.

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