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What Challenges Do Businesses Face When Choosing Fire Alarm Systems?

Apr 06, 2020
What Challenges Do Businesses Face When Choosing Fire Alarm Systems?

Fire alarms are important safety considerations for any business. This is not only to bring attention to a possible ongoing fire but also for buildings to be in compliance with fire regulations. With a total of 1,238 workplace fires in Ireland in 2016, there is no doubt that installing the right fire alarm system on commercial properties is very important.

But finding the right fire alarm for business is not always easy. For starters, there are several types of commercial fire alarms. Each comes with their own pros and cons depending on the design and use of the building in question. Secondly, different fire alarms have components that require varying levels of maintenance throughout their lifetime. And then there is the issue of cost.

Fire alarm systems fall under two main categories:

  • Automatic: fire and smoke detection equipment that can provide audio-visual alerts to raise awareness that a fire might be in progress.
  • Manual: with this type of alarm, people at the building are required to use devices referred to as pull stations to raise the alarm. These pull stations come with accessible levers and are usually positioned at several locations in and around a building.

These two categories of commercial fire alarm systems are further broken down into addressable, conventional and hybrid fire alarms.

Addressable systems

Whether you are using manual or automatic fire alarms, addressable systems allow you to monitor each alarm in the building. That way, you can know which ones are working and which are not. With these advanced features, it becomes easier to maintain fire alarms in your building and you can better plan your fire alarm arrangement on the property.

Conventional systems

With conventional fire alarms, each component is used in respective zones within a building. All are directly connected to a central control panel. As a result, different fire alarms can be placed in separate sections of the building to work autonomously. The downside is that each alarm has to be checked manually to find out if it’s in working order.

Hybrid systems

As the name suggests, this type of fire alarm system combines the best features of addressable and conventional fire alarms. Hybrid alarm systems can help to solve the shortcomings of both addressable and conventional systems but this requires careful planning.


In addition to figuring out the best type of fire detection system for your commercial building, cost has to also be taken into consideration. By comparison, addressable fire alarm systems tend to be on the more expensive side due to their more intelligent features. Hybrid systems can also be rather expensive depending on the specific components used to make up the system.

On the other hand, when considering cost, maintenance should also be factored in. For instance, conventional systems, although often cheaper, can turn out to cost more maintenance-wise due to the need to check each fire alarm independently.

Choosing the right fire alarm system for your commercial property can be the difference between minimal damage and huge losses or even death. If you are not sure what works best for your particular property, it is best to consult with experts. Power Right Limited can provide the expertise in designing, installing and maintaining commercial fire alarm equipment, so it might be worth your while checking out what they have to offer.

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