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How to Conduct a Fire Alarm Inspection

Aug 17, 2007
Having fire alarms in your home is a great way to safeguard the safety of you and your loved ones. Along with installing the fire alarms, there is also the need to make sure you conduct a fire alarm inspection periodically. Here are a few things to make sure you check on a regular basis.

A crucial element in your fire alarm inspection is to make sure the batteries are in working order. Check the current level to make sure the battery is fully charged. Also check the terminals and terminal clamps to make sure they are clear of any type of rust or corrosion. You may want to clean them every now and then with a non-flammable solvent, to keep them in top condition. Change the batteries as needed, but certainly no less than once a year. Many manufacturers of fire alarm systems recommend that you change the battery at twice per calendar year.

In like manner, check the electrical connections that will be powering the units most of the time. Remember that the battery is there to kick in when the power is off for any reason, not as the first line of defense. As part of the fire alarm inspection, test the horns and strobes and make sure they are loud enough and function at full capacity. Should a fire break out, you want both the sound and the revolving lights to be enough to attract the attention of all occupants within the dwelling. Also make sure the automatic shift from electrical power to the battery backup is working seamlessly.

Fire alarm systems are made to not only detect the heat from a fire, but also smoke. This valuable feature could buy you and your loved ones extra seconds or even minutes that allow you to escape from the house. As a part of your fire alarm inspection, direct smoke at the units, making sure they sound at the slightest hint of smoke.

If your fire alarm system includes a display panel, include a check of the panel as part of your fire alarm inspection. Make sure the panel is functioning properly and can be used by any fire fighters that need to enter the home with the intent of containing the fire.

Investing in a fire alarm system is smart. Making sure you conduct a fire alarm inspection on a regular basis is even smarter. Sit down with your family and plan out periodic inspections throughout the year. All of you will sleep better knowing your fire alarm system is functionally at full capacity.
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