Automatic fire detection and alarm systems were developed to warn building occupiers in the event of fire emergencies. Generally, they do not take part in the process of mitigating or extinguishing fire.
Their primary purpose is to warn the occupants of an ongoing fire emergency. Some fire alarm systems are interfaced with a fire suppression or other fire control system. Manual call points are also installed to allow the person who discovers the fire to raise the alarm.
There are different types of detectors that are used to sense the presence of fire. The best way to determine which one is appropriate for your business or building is to understand their differences and how they operate.
Detectors generally differ in terms of how they are triggered. A fire detection system commonly uses smoke, heat, or flame detectors to trigger the alarms and alert the occupants and first responders.
Photoelectric smoke detectors use light to detect the presence of fire. Inside the device is a light-sensing chamber. An LED light shoots a beam of light in a straight line across this chamber.
When smoke enters the chamber, it deflects the LED light into a photosensor in a different compartment inside the same chamber. The alarm is triggered as soon as the light beam hits the sensor. These detectors are most effective at detecting fires in the earliest stages of smoldering.
Meanwhile, heat detectors work by detecting an increase in air temperature caused by flames. They are designed to minimize property damage by reacting to the change in temperature.
Remember, the time between the fire outbreak and the start of fire fighting is the single most crucial part in fire control. The fire must be detected and extinguished as soon as possible to prevent it from growing further.
Commercial fire detection systems are commonly installed in accordance with AS 1670. This standard covers fire detection, warning systems, control systems and intercom systems for the system design, installation and commissioning. Maintenance section of fire detection systems can be found in AS 1851-2012-Section 6.
For further discussion or advice with regard to fire protection and safety, contact FCF Sunshine Coast. We offer a wide range of services including supply, installation, and routine maintenance check of fire detection systems and other fire protection equipment.