A Comprehensive Guide to Choosing the Best Fire Alarms for Office Spaces

Regardless of the size of the company, the reality is that you're always going to need fire alarms for office spaces. Perhaps you think that something like a residential smoke alarm will do the trick, but is that enough for fire and safety codes? The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has 300 consensus codes covering everything from how your fire alarms prompt danger to what kind of additives and chemicals could be utilized in an extinguishing system.

Fire alarms for office spaces are important in making sure that your employees and company are safe in case of fire.

To decide what fire alarms for office spaces will best protect your building, think of the size and layout of your facility, hazard type, and any other needs you might have as the business owner. Partner with fire protection professionals to determine the type of fire alarm system best for protecting the building, and don't forget to take fire alarm monitoring into consideration.

Your fire equipment company should be able to provide you with information on all the options of a commercial fire alarm system and walk you through selecting a system that checks all your boxes from a convenience and safety standpoint.

Here's some information on choosing the right fire alarms for office spaces.

What are the Types of Fire Alarms for Office Spaces?

There are two primary fire alarms for office spaces, addressable and conventional. These systems vary from scope of protection to how fire and smoke are detected.

It's vital to understand the best choice for your facility type.

Addressable

This type of fire alarm for office spaces offers hyper-specific identification of the location of a fire in your building. Each location is provided with a unique address so that when emergency personnel needs to find and extinguish a fire, these experts know exactly where to go.

The benefits of this fire alarm for office type would be more precise identification of the location of the fire and safer and more efficient evacuation.

Conventional

Conventional fire alarms for office spaces are simpler than addressable alarms because there's only one central control panel wherein all notification devices are connected. Rather than specific "addresses," as with addressable systems, numbered zones or sections cover larger areas.

The benefits of this system type would be reliability and cost.

Knowing the Best Fire Alarms for Office Spaces

There are a lot of considerations needed in choosing the appropriate fire alarms for office spaces for your building and overall needs. Below are some considerations.

Level of Protection

The layout and size of your building will dictate what type of fire alarms for office spaces will offer the best protection.

Occupancy and use would also affect your decision; what areas are occupied? What hazards are present?

Existing System/Upgrades

Depending on your current system, you might need a total system replacement, or you might be able to utilize components from your existing system and upgrades.

Functionality

Addressable systems give more detailed information and tend to have an easier to use control panel; conventional alarms can be harder to understand.

Code Requirements

Your building may require a certain type of fire alarm for office spaces based on fire codes.

Benefits of Having Fire Alarms for Office Spaces

Attempting to wade through legal codes for what fire protection you legally need and knowing what will be best for your company can be overwhelming. However, doing your research and hiring the right professionals may help you, and the many benefits of efficient fire alarms for office spaces may surprise you.

There are many benefits in having fire alarms installed in your office.

Safety

Safety is the critical function of fire alarms for office spaces. They keep the property, people, and your business safe against destruction and damage.

Life Safety

The main reason businesses are required to get fire alarm systems is due to life safety. The fact is: that good fire alarms for office spaces could save lives. The faster people are informed of a fire in a building, the faster they could get out of the danger and the less likely they'll become trapped or faced with a problematic situation.

Some advanced commercial fire alarm systems even alert those inside the building about the fire's location and instruct people on the safest, quickest route to escape.

Property Safety

When fire alarms for office alert authorities to a fire incidence, it speeds up response time. The sooner a fire is extinguished, the less time it has to damage the building, documents, and assets. Moreover, fire detection systems could be connected to other fire extinguishers, like sprinklers, quickly extinguish fires.

Quicker Response Times

Modern fire alarms for office spaces can be linked directly to emergency services or monitoring centers. As a result, firefighters could be immediately dispatched to your business when the system detects a fire. As previously mentioned, a faster response time suggests that the fire has less time to spread and risks the safety of your business and your employees.

Reduced costs in the long run is one of the benefits of having fire alarms for office spaces.

Reducing Costs

You may or may not realize how efficient fire alarms for office spaces can minimize your costs. Yes, the initial cost could be substantial, but the up-front investment could be well worth it in many ways.

First, if there's a fire, a proper fire detection system speeds up response time and ensures your assets from the fire spread. Beyond that, though, a tested and well-maintained commercial fire alarm system can lower your insurance costs, decreasing your overhead. You'll not face fines during inspections for not having a good fire monitoring system.

Integration of Systems

Some buildings require access control systems. Advanced fire alarms for office spaces can benefit from being interconnected with these systems. Say, for instance, there is a fire in your establishment. If an access control system is still active in a location where personnel is located, it could slow them down when they have to leave.

However, if a fire detection system is attached to the access control system, the former can disable the latter, saving precious time and allowing people to exit more quickly.

Minimization of Unnecessary Business Interruptions

Fire alarms can also prevent unnecessary workday interruptions.

A substandard or faulty fire alarm system could be triggered when there are no signs of a fire, resulting in costly business interruptions during which your customers and employees must leave the establishment and wait for the fire department to give the all-clear. With a properly installed, well-maintained, and high-quality fire detection system, this likelihood becomes minimal, if not completely eradicated.

Protecting Your Business as a Whole

A fire could destroy a building if it's not efficiently and quickly extinguished. If your business suffers from extensive damage from a fire, it could take months and thousands of dollars to repair. Numerous businesses never recovered and could not reopen after a fire. Furthermore, if there's no fire alarm system in place in your business, or if there's a substandard system, you can find yourself facing pricey fines and a temporary shutdown of your company, and lawsuits that could bankrupt it.

Conclusion

You need high-quality and efficient fire alarms for office spaces to help protect your employees and your business in case of a fire breakout. We at A-1 Fire & Security Equipment are well-versed in installing fire alarm systems. We hold all of our commercial fire alarm systems to the very highest standards of the National Fire Protection Association. By working with us at A-1 Fire & Security Equipment, you can reap all the benefits of a high-quality commercial fire alarm system.

FAQ

Where should fire alarms be located in the workplace?

Smoke alarms must be placed in the center of the ceiling. Meanwhile, smoke alarms can be placed on the wall, as long as the area is fitted between 300mm and 500mm below the ceiling.

When is a fire alarm necessary for a commercial building

Commercial buildings, like office spaces, must always have a fully functional smoke detector installed in every room and hallway of the structure.