Having a great fire alarm system is certainly the best way to prevent massive destruction. Devastating fires demolish homes and commercial properties more often than you’d think. Most fires are caused by internal issues like electrical problems or heating equipment. But the state of Pennsylvania also reports twice as many wildfires as the national average.
Even a small fire can cause thousands of dollars in damage in just a matter of minutes. The average loss to homeowners after a fire is close to $24,000 – and this number is far higher for businesses and other commercial properties.
But most buildings are merely equipped with smoke detectors and a few fire extinguishers, following the bare minimum requirements for fire protection. In the event of a raging fire, these won’t do you much good.
Homes and businesses should have multiple devices installed for an improved fire detection system. Now, there are lots of fire alarm devices out there; here are the ones that can really make a difference.
1. High-Sensitivity Smoke Detectors
Smoke detectors are very important fire alarm devices that are commonly found in most buildings. But shockingly only about 3 out of every 5 homes have working smoke detectors installed. Further, most homes only had a few smoke detectors scattered throughout, and these systems were rarely interconnected. So, if an alarm was going off on one side of the house, residents may not even hear it on the other side.
Smoke detectors are typically just the first line of defense that sets off an alarm – and that’s about it. But you want a more high-sensitivity detector than the ones you find in the hardware store in a multi-device fire alarm system.
High-sensitivity smoke detectors are far more effective than typical devices, as they will alarm much faster. A small flame can fill a room with smoke in just 30 seconds, making it far more difficult to vacate safely. Therefore, it’s far better to have a system that will alert if a small amount of smoke is detected.
2. Continuous Air Sampling
Apart from just detecting fires, multi-device systems can also alert you to any dangerous chemicals present in the air. Gases like carbon monoxide, VOCs (volatile organic compounds), and other pollutants can lead to dangerous health issues.
Continuous air sampling devices should be installed along with smoke detectors for added protection. This not only ensures that your air quality is at a normal, safe level, but it can improve the effectiveness of your fire alarm system, too.
Thousands of fires are caused by gas pipeline leaks every year; but before a flame ignites, particles from this gas could be detected by continuous air sampling devices. This could help to prevent a fire from starting altogether.
3. Area of Rescue Voice Service
It is not enough to simply have an alarm go off in your house/office if a fire starts. If you are trapped in a room, you need a communication system to communicate with emergency services.
This is typically more common in commercial fire alarm systems, particularly customized solutions installed in larger buildings. These are often found in elevators so occupants can speak directly to emergency services if the elevator is not moving or they are trapped inside during a fire.
But these are just as important for residential properties, as you may not always have a cellphone handy during an emergency. Installing area of rescue intercoms in specific areas like bedrooms, basements, or rooms without access to main exit points is recommended.
4. Equipment Monitoring
Fires can occur at any time and be equally as – if not more – destructive to unoccupied buildings. You want to make sure that your system is operating correctly, even if you are away from the premises.
Equipment monitoring allows you to check the status of your fire alarm system through a cellular device. From here, you can receive real-time notifications if any of your devices detect an issue. You can also be alerted if anything is not operating correctly and needs a battery replacement, a repair, or even a software update.
5. Automatic Emergency Service Notification
If an alarm is triggered, there is limited time to contact emergency services before a fire can quickly destroy your property. If you are not on site, or you are trying to evacuate the building, you might not have time to do this on your own.
Now, there is a concern about false alarms here, especially for home fires. We have all set off the smoke detector when we accidentally burned dinner, and there was no real emergency.
Automatic emergency service notification is one of the main differences between residential and commercial fire systems. A residential system will send a wellness call first to make sure the alarm is verified. Commercial systems will notify the fire dept immediately, as false alarms are typically less common.
Over to You
Protecting your residential or commercial property with a multi-device fire alarm system should be a top priority. One of the easiest ways to get this done is by partnering with a provider that offers a fire alarm system with multiple devices included for a well-integrated solution.
2 Krew offers top-of-the-line fire detection systems with multiple devices designed to keep your property protected – even when you aren’t there. We service the greater Pittsburgh, PA area and offer both residential and commercial solutions. To learn more about our fire alarm systems, reach out to our team online or call us at 724-543-0274.