Fire alarm systems are an essential component of fire protection for homes and businesses. Did you know that there are multiple types of fire alarm systems? The best way to decide which kind is the right choice for your business or building is to understand the differences between each alarm system. Having the appropriate types of fire alarms can make all the difference in your building’s fire protection. Let’s go over the different types of fire alarms.
Thermal Fire Alarms
Also known as heat alarms, thermal alarms work by detecting an increase in air temperature caused by fire. While these detectors are known to trigger false alarms occasionally, they have a longer reaction time than other smoke detectors. False alarms may be triggered in overly steamy, dusty, or humid spaces and are best suited for buildings that often remain empty such as warehouses or storage facilities. However, thermal alarms are arguably the least safe type of fire alarm since they go off only when temperatures reach a certain point, meaning they can only detect a fire once it has reached a set level.
Ionization Fire Alarms
Ionization fire alarm systems depend on a constant electrical current. This current runs between two metal plates inside the device that is only triggered when smoke enters. When this happens, it triggers an alarm to signal a fire. Ionization alarms are best used in locations that contain highly combustible materials that burn quickly, such as flammable liquids, paint cleaners, and paper products. The downside of these alarms is that they can only detect fires that are already burning and producing a lot of smoke. So, they are not effective against smoke from slow-burning or smoldering fires.
Photoelectric Fire Alarms
Photoelectric alarms are similar to ionization detectors; however, they rely on light instead of electricity. When smoke enters the chamber, it scatters the light beam, which then triggers the alarm. This type of device is good at alerting to smaller fires than an ionization alarm. Photoelectric alarms are known to be incredibly reliable and rarely trigger false alarms.
Combined Photoelectric and Ionization Alarms
An industry favorite, a combination of ionization and photoelectric alarms is often considered the best option available. With both an electrical current and a light beam, this device is one of the fastest on the market, and it detects smoke rapidly to sound a warning signal.
No matter if you need a fire alarm for your home or business, there is a monitoring system out there that is perfect for you. For more information about fire alarms and other fire protection essentials, contact us today!
Commercial and Residential Fire Prevention from Judd Fire Protection
If you want to ensure your home and business are safe throughout the year, trust Judd Fire Protection, LLC. We have over two decades of experience designing, installing, inspecting, and repairing residential and commercial fire protection systems. We serve clients throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C., Virginia, and West Virginia. If you are interested in finding out more about our services and protecting your home and business, give us a call at 410-871-3480 or contact us online. For more fire safety tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.