What is a Conventional Fire Alarm System?
The conventional fire alarm system is the most common fire alarm system in commercial buildings. Although nowadays, with technology developing, there are other fire alarm systems like addressable fire alarm system, wireless fire alarm system, etc. for people to choose from, in many cases, the conventional fire alarm system is still the ideal choice for most small places like small enterprises, small schools, specialty stores, restaurants, and apartments.
Conventional fire alarm system protects buildings’ safety by dividing them into different zones and keeping an eye on them one by one. It works with a series of detecting devices and alarm devices, giving warning alarm to alert the nearby residents or rescuers.
Advantages of Conventional Fire Alarm System
One of the advantages of conventional fire alarm system is that they are rather economical. Though it is not expensive, the conventional fire control panel is still a great option for protecting small buildings.
Conventional fire alarm system is simple to install. You don’t need to make a big change to the system existing, the conventional fire alarm system itself can be compatible with other manufacturers’ equipment. Also, it doesn’t have complicated wiring, just follow the wiring instruction, people that are not professionals can also finish the wiring quickly.
Disadvantages of Conventional Fire Alarm System
The main disadvantage of the conventional fire alarm system is that it is not addressable. When there is a fire alarm, the system can only locate the position roughly. If you want to know the exact position of the fire, you will need to check every detector in the area. However, the more advanced addressable fire alarm system solves this problem perfectly.
Another disadvantage is that the conventional fire alarm system can’t seem to record the details of the past events. Most conventional fire alarm systems don't have the function of notifying alarms/faults/monitoring events.
What Devices Does a Conventional Fire Alarm System Consist of?
1. Fire alarm control panel
The fire alarm control panel is used in the fire alarm system to receive, show and transmit fire alarm signals, and can send control signals to other control indicating equipment.
2. Fire detector
Fire detector is a device that checks and detects fire in the conventional fire alarm system. The fire detector is the "sensory organ" of the system, its function is to monitor whether there is a fire nearby. Once there is a fire, the detector will convert the physical characteristics of fire, such as heat, smoke, gas and radiant light, into electrical signals, and immediately send them to the fire alarm control panel.
According to the ways to collect fire on the site, the fire detectors can be divided into:
2.1 Smoke detector
Smoke detector is a fire detector that uses a small smoke sensor to respond to the smoke aerosols (solid or liquid particles) flowing in the surrounding air resulting from combustion or pyrolysis. According to its working principles, the smoke detector can be divided into ionic type and photoelectric type.
2.2 Heat detector
Heat detector can be divided into fixed temperature detector, rate-of-rise detector, and rate-of-rise and fixed temperature detector.
When a fire occurs, the burning of substances could generate a large amount of heat, increasing the surrounding temperature. A heat detector is a fire detector that responds to changes in the temperature around a certain point or a certain loop in the detecting area. It converts heat changes into electrical signals for alarm.
2.3 Flame detector
Flame detector mainly includes ultraviolet flame detector, infrared fire detector, and UV&IR combined detector. It is mainly used to respond to the light feature of the fire.
Flame detector is suitable for places where open flames are likely to be generated when a fire occurs, like tank areas, warehouses, and other chemical manufacturing production and storage places.
2.4 Gas detector
Gas detector is a detector that detects gas concentrations. This device is suitable for dangerous places with flammable or toxic gases, and can continuously detect the content of the gas in the air within the lower explosion limit for a long time. Gas detector mainly includes toxic or harmful gas detector and combustible gas detector.
Gas detector can be widely adopted in gas, petrochemical, metallurgical iron and steel, electric power and other industries that might have flammable or toxic gases.
2.5 Combined detector
The combined detector is a detector that combines various detection principles into one, and it includes smoke and heat combined detector and smoke and gas combined detector.
3. Manual call point
The manual call point usually is installed in public places. When people at the site confirm there is a fire, they will activate the manual call point, and it will send a signal to the fire alarm control panel. After the fire alarm control panel receives the alarm signal, it will send out an alarm sound to warn people in the area.
4. Sound and flashing fire alarm
The sound and flashing fire alarm is used for the sound alarm and flash alarm when there is a fire, especially in a place where the visibility is vague or there is a lot of smoke when a fire occurs.
4.1 Fire alarm bell
4.2 Fire alarm indicator
The fire alarm bell is usually used in dorms and production workshops. Normally, people should install one in each detecting area. They can also use the burglar alarm, for the alarming sound effect is good.
4.3 Strobe sounder
When the fire detector in the room alarms, the indicator on the fire alarm will automatically flash according to the device type set by the alarm, or it can be activated through the linkage of the fire alarm control panel, so that the staff can know that the fire detector in the room is activated without entering the room.
The strobe sounder is a device with both a sounder and a flashing indicator. It can be activated by the fire alarm control panel in the conventional fire alarm system, or it can be activated directly through people. After the strobe sounder is activated, it will give strong sound and flashing signals to remind people on the site to escape.
5. Conventional fire alarm system power supply
The power supply in the conventional fire alarm system generally adopts batteries, and the backup power supply of the conventional fire alarm system can make sure that the system can still work normally if the AC power supply goes wrong.