Choosing the right fire detector is vital to saving lives and reducing damage. There are many types of fire detectors, all with features to suit different environments and support different fire detection systems. 

Why do you need the right fire detector? 

Even with regular checks and maintenance, appropriate fire detection in your building is a legal requirement.

Under the Fire Safety Order 2005, it is the duty of the ‘responsible person’ in each commercial and industrial premise to ensure that you meet the requirements. This includes ensuring there is a fire detection system suitable for your premise put in place. 

To meet legal compliance and the requirements of most insurers your fire detection system must be maintained regularly in accordance with the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and in compliance to BS 5839.  

At Highland Services, we can maintain your fire detection systems as a single contract or as part of our Facilities Management option. We can also design, supply, install, commission and maintain fire detection systems if needed. 

Why are commercial fire detection systems different to residential? 

Commercial fire detection systems differ from residential because there are much stricter legal guidelines and compliance requirements. In most circumstances, a commercial environment sees a higher turnover of people visiting the premises and is therefore a place of higher risk.

Due to the stricter code regulations, testing and inspections need to be more frequent in commercial settings than residential. Commercial properties also tend to be larger and more complex, which is why fire detection systems need to be uniquely designed to accommodate individual needs. In some cases, commercial settings may require manual pull call points so individuals can trigger a fire detection response if necessary.

 

How do you choose the right fire detector? 

There are three main types of commercial fire alarm detector systems. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages so it’s best to ask a professional to advise which alarm is most suitable for your needs. 


Conventional Fire Detectors

These systems consist of ‘zones’ to monitor different locations across the building. The zones are all monitored from a central control panel which will then allow users to see which zone the fire is located within. 

The zone system is best suited for smaller properties as the visibility of the location of the fire is limited (eg. there is no other detail other than which zone the fire is in, so if it covers a large area such as a whole floor, it’s hard to see where on the floor the danger is.) 


Addressable Fire Detectors

Unlike conventional, addressable fire detection alarms do allow you to pinpoint the exact location of the fire. These can also be known as ‘intelligent systems’ due to the increased monitoring abilities and are best for larger premises. 

Despite being more expensive than conventional, you can see addressale is a worthwhile investment.


Hybrid Fire Detectors

As you may be able to guess, hybrid is a combination of addressable and conventional! 

Taking the best of both and combining it to create an alarm that allows for the hardwired zones of conventional to work in tandem with the addressable loops. Hybrid is the newest addition to commercial fire detection systems. 

When choosing your detector for commercial use there are a few factors to consider, but with the right advice your choice shouldn’t be complicated.  Whether you’re looking for the right equipment for your fire protection needs or you’re looking for training, at Highland Services, we can help. 


At Highland, we install and maintain automatic fire detection systems which provide the earliest possible warning of a fire for your peace of mind. This enables us to ensure your premises can be safely evacuated and fire tackled as soon as possible. 


Get in touch with our team for expert advice and for help with your next project. You can also view our previous projects here.