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Regularly checking your fire alarm system can be a lifesaver.

A single fault in a single component could cause the entire system to fail.

To ensure your household will be sufficiently alerted to any potential fires, read the following guide – created by the team here at Protect & Detect – and go to sleep knowing you’ve kept you and your family safe.

Fire alarm box in factory

Different types of fire alarm systems

There are various fire alarm systems nowadays; each deliver the same results but operate in slightly different ways.

They can be grouped into the following four categories:

Conventional Fire Alarm System

A conventional fire alarm system will be the typically most used system on this list.

The system comprises a number of ‘break glass’ or ‘press here’ call point units and detectors which are all wired together to a control panel.

When a call point or detector is triggered, the control panel will display which zone has been affected.


Addressable System

An addressable system is very similar to the conventional fire alarm system but, unlike the latter which only notifies you of the relevant zone, is able to determine exactly which call point unit or detector has triggered the alarm.

Analogue Addressable System

An addressable system can be further categorised into different systems.

An analogue addressable system is where each device within the system is physically connected together by a wire.

Each device has its own unique ‘location’ and can be traced by the control panel via the wiring system.

Wireless fire alarm system

A wireless fire alarm system uses radio communications to wirelessly determine which location has triggered the fire alarm.


It’s important you understand which type of system is installed in your home and how it operates.

This will make it easier to perform checks and make you more aware of any faults in your system.

Many people think they don’t need to be educated in this way because they can hire specialists to check their system for them.

It is recommended you have a specialist check your fire alarm system twice a year, but it’s equally important that you perform weekly maintenance checks yourself.

The following checklist will help you perform a comprehensive inspection and ensure your fire alarm system is working correctly.

  • Check your fire alarm’s status on the control panel. This will either be on a visual display or by illuminated LEDs, depending on system.
  • Check that none of your call points, detectors or panels have any physical damage to them.
  • Check that all call points are accessible and detectors don’t have objects within 500mm of them.
  • You should perform a routine test of your fire alarm weekly to ensure the panel and sound is working sufficiently.
  • Inspect the main, vented battery of your system for any damage.
  • Visually inspect all structures and components for any damage.
  • Write down any problems you do see in a logbook and call a professional.

Protect & Detect is a leading fire safety and security company, servicing Ipswich, Colchester, Cambridge, Bury St. Edmunds, Chelmsford and beyond.

Protect & Detect offers a wide range of fire safety and security services including; fire alarms, fire extinguishers, burglar alarms, intruder alarms, fire sprinkler systems, access control, door entry systems, CCTV, barriers, nurse and warden calls. Contact our friendly team today for a quick quote.


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