Fire Alarm Testing
It is not sufficient to just install fire alarms in your residential property or place of business. As well as making sure you have the correct grade and category for the size and layout of your building, you need to make sure the sensors and alarms are working properly. This will ensure the safety of the property, and give any residents or staff the chance to exit the building in the event of a fire.
Only regular testing will ensure that the alarms are working correctly and will respond if there is a danger of fire. There is no point having a fire alarm if it cannot be relied upon to alert residents or staff to the presence of danger.
Another reason for testing frequently is that there may be a danger of false alarms, particularly if the fire alarm has not been serviced regularly. A false alarm can cause the fire brigade to be called out unnecessarily. This will incur considerable expense, but can also be dangerous if there is an emergency somewhere else and the crew are busy attending a false alarm.
Make sure you are not the cause of a situation as dangerous as this; your fire alarms must be tested and serviced regularly.
What are the Fire Alarm Testing Intervals?
It is essential that your alarms are checked, but you must know the difference between servicing and testing. As far as servicing is concerned, the fire alarm regulations in North Wales and the rest of the UK state that your system should be adequately maintained. This is quite a loose description and as such, the government recommends that fire alarm systems are inspected every six months by a competent firm such as GWP Electrical. This will ensure that your fire alarm system is unlikely to fail in the event of a fire breaking out on your property.
On the other hand, fire alarm testing is less technical. It is a quick check to make sure that the alarm is reacting as expected and there are no issues. This is not as extensive as a proper service, and the recommendation is that it is carried out weekly. If there is nobody responsible onsite, the same firm that carry out your six monthly inspection checks can fulfil this requirement for you.
All that needs to be carried out in each of these weekly tests is a quick check of at least one of the fire alarm call-points. If the alarm activates, then you can reset your alarm and your test is completed. The following week’s test should always involve a different call-point.
It goes without saying that if there is a problem at this stage, your fire alarm company should be notified immediately.
If you are situated in North Wales, GWP Electrical are here to help. We can assist you with any of your fire alarm needs whether that is a technical inspection, the weekly check, or simply giving you advice on your safety and legal requirements.