Wireless fire detection technology has come a long way in recent years. Not only has technology advanced to become more efficient and reliable, but there are also many rules and regulations that have been set in place to ensure that wireless devices are safe and reliable for use.
However, while wireless fire detection has overcome many concerns over reliability, and is approved for use in a range of different applications, it is of the utmost importance that it is designed and installed correctly to ensure its efficient operation.
Rules and Regulations
All fire alarm systems are governed by a number of standards to determine whether the devices and systems are safe for use. In particular wireless fire detection systems must comply with two, key regulations:
EN54-25 specifies the requirements, test methods and performance for components used in fire alarm systems that use radio frequency links to communicate. This European standard for wireless fire alarms dictates that all wireless fire alarm systems sold in Europe must be tested by a third party test house to make sure they reach specific requirements.
ETSI 300:220 is a Radio Equipment Directive (RED) which specifies the technical characteristics and test methods which must be used during the conformance assessment of Short Range Device (SRD) equipment in the frequency range of 25 MHz to 1 GHz.
The Importance of a Properly Designed, Installed and Maintained Wireless Fire Detection System
With the current online availability of wireless fire detection devices, business owners are often tempted to cut corners and order what they feel is suitable without any expert consultation. Many online providers also allow the basic design of a system based on a series of questions which may be answered incorrectly or inaccurately.
Every fire alarm that is installed in non-domestic premises, including HMOs, must comply with BS 5839-1, the code of practice for design installation and commissioning and maintenance of fire alarm systems in non-domestic premises. Along with this, The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 states that it is the responsibility of the Responsible Person (RP) to carry out certain fire safety duties which include:
- ensuring the general fire precautions in the building are satisfactory;
- and conducting a fire risk assessment.
Therefore, the RP must make sure that suitable detection is present.
By installing a fire detection system that is not suitable, the RP is not only at risk of being heavily fined, but also puts lives at risk. Therefore, it is essential that a fire alarm system is correctly designed, installed and commissioned with the help of an expert.
In order to design and install a suitable fire detection system, the first step is to carry out a risk assessment to establish the requirements of the system and which category system is required.
This risk assessment should then be passed on to an experienced fire alarm designer that is familiar with the relevant codes and regulations to survey the building and produce a fire alarm design.
During this stage, a wireless survey should also be conducted to establish whether there is sufficient signal between the wireless field devices and their receiver or not.
The design should then be passed to an installer and commissioning engineer to complete the installation to specification.
Wi-Fyre is an innovative wireless fire detection system from Eurofyre. Wi-Fyre allows hardwired and wireless devices to interconnect seamlessly, providing a cost-effective solution. It can be used to form part of a new fire alarm system or as part of an existing solution and allows wireless devices to be used where necessary to reduce installation time, disruption to a building’s operation and cost.
Wi-Fyre wireless devices communicate with the fire alarm control panel via a Wi-Fyre transponder that is connected to the fire alarm system wiring via a compatible interface module. Each transponder can communicate with up to 30 field devices such as detectors, sounders and manual call points, and up to six transponders can be used in each building.
A Wi-Fyre survey head is also available to ensure that the signal between the transponder and the device to be connected is strong enough for the system to operate sufficiently.
All Wi-Fyre devices are certified to EN54-25, meets the requirements of ETSI 300:220 and BS 5839-1.
For more information about Wi-Fyre or about the design and commissioning of wireless fire alarm systems, please feel free to give us a call on +44 (0)1329 835024 or email [email protected] where we would be happy to answer any questions.