It is probably quite evident that there are a number of fire alarms available, and at greatly varying prices, so it might be hard to understand the differences between Optical, Ionisation and Heat alarms. This guide is aimed at taking some of that confusion away.
So what is the main difference involving the models? As mentioned above you will find three types of alarm, each with its own uses.
Optical Alarm: This kind of smoke alarm usually uses an infrared beam between two points, the alarm being triggered should the beam be disturbed. In much the same way being a criminal might trip an alarm when breaking right into a bank vault or museum inside the movies, if the beam is broken, the alarm will go off. It detects larger smoke particles best.
Ionisation Alarm: These alarms use 2 small plates (one charged positively, one negatively) plus an alpha particle source to create a constant current running throughout the gap between the plates. When smoke enters the chamber it disrupts this process, interrupting the charge. Once the charge drops, the alarm goes off. These alarms would be best at detecting smaller smoke particles.
Heat Alarms: A heat alarm will trigger when the room temperature reaches a particular level. They are doing not detect smoke, and are not to be utilized as a substitute for a smoke alarm, but needs to be found in assisting these alarms for greater fire detection.
How come we need different types of fire alarm?
Different types of alarm exist because of the several types of fire. Believe it or not, fires act in a different way depending on what is burning, and is important to identify the fire as soon as possible. Different alarms are better at discovering different fires, and choosing the right alarm for the ideal room could save your valuable life some day.
Fires can be particularly smokey, often brought on by the burning of papers or clothing etc, and burn rapidly, producing smaller smoke particles. The Ionisation alarms are better at detecting these fires.
Other fires can be quite a lot less smokey, often being harder to detect, and are due to the burning of carpets, sofas or electrical devices. These fires have a tendency to burn less rapidly, producing larger smoke particles. Optical alarms will be better at detecting these fires.
Which fire alarm do I need? This information is meant as a general guide, and then for more descriptive safety advice it is strongly advised that you simply contact Fire extinguishers Cheshire. This being said, the data below should assist you to decide.
Optical alarm: Living room, dining-room, hallway
Ionisation alarm: Bedrooms, walk in wardrobes
Heat alarms: Dusty areas like garages, unconverted lofts etc in which the dust could hinder another alarm types.
Alarms can be purchased as either battery operated, or mains byskyu with battery backup. The mains alarms continue to get results for a time after power is lost for the unit, but only as a backup. If it is the case, mains needs to be restored to the unit immediately, or perhaps the battery changed.
Some alarms even include a choice of interconnectivity, meaning if an individual alarm sounds, then each of the alarms sound. This really is highly useful in larger properties where one alarm might not be heard by everyone. The concept is always to increase the alarm to everybody right away – as soon as a fire starts – and getting the alarms linked together will make this happen.
Fires are accountable for a huge number of deaths every year, as we all know through the adverts broadcast on television or radio. This is a fact, and will be cut down tremendously by simply checking your alarm to make sure that it really works, and that it must be the proper alarm for your location it really is placed. Remember that alarms need replacing after some time, and it is worth checking on the unit and also to note the replace by date. Should you be unsure, talk with your neighborhood Fire Service.