Commercial fire alarm systems over wifi?!


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Old 08-03-18, 08:05 AM
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Commercial fire alarm systems over wifi?!

Maybe beyond people here - commercial locations are different than homes, but...

I take care of the computer network for a small business. They had a lightning strike recently and that blew out their 20+ year old fire alarm system.

one of the guys there is talking about a wireless system that would use the wifi I installed.

Seems wifi is another layer of potential issues vs. existing wires to each sensor. The guy talks bigger than he is. Is he getting his info wrong?

Yes, I've heard of home burg;lar alarm systems that are wireless. But that's not using the existing wifi, they have their own frequency / network?

Anyone know much do / can a new commercial fire alarm system use wifi? Yeah, maybe an app on a phone to the control panel for status info. But inside the building to send signals within the building in case of fire / hand pull fire alarms?

the wiring is old but I'd bet morereliable than wifi.
 
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Old 08-03-18, 09:37 AM
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Hi, is this guy from a Fire Alarm Co. or an employee? I would strongly suggest having your current system evaluated, it can get involved, depending on your location you maybe required to bring the system up to current code standards.
Geo
 
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Old 08-03-18, 09:50 AM
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he's just someone in the company that's getting the new system. I think he likes to talk like he's in charge / in the middle of everything. But really on the periphery and likely heard 3 - 4th hand from someone that did speak with the fire alarm company. and like the telephone game, a mention about something else turned into 'our fire system will likely be wireless / on our existing wifi network'.

Do any of the newest commercial fire alarm systems use wifi?

I called Kidde, commercial division and got to a guy who sounded competent. and he said no. If there's anything radio based, it's using it's own band / frequencies. Not going to rely on wifi.

Just want to double check here that the guy at the client misspoke.
 
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Old 08-03-18, 10:36 AM
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I canít speak on the WiFi systems, anything I have ever been involved with more recently has been fully addressable, some new systems can be configured to use with existing wiring.
Geo
 
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Old 08-03-18, 12:16 PM
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I install/service commercial fire alarms every day.

It is very rare to see wireless used in a commercial fire application. The liability is just too great. If it was a wireless system.... the alarm would use sensors on its own frequency..... not wifi. He may be thinking of using the wifi to communicate with the central station. That is possible but a commercial fire alarm needs two forms of communication. Typically it's been two independent hard wired phone lines. Now, many of our systems use the internet with a back up cellular communicator.

You can reuse the existing wiring if it hasn't been damaged.
Sensors are only half the system. Horn/strobes must also be used and they can't be wireless.

Commercial fire alarm systems are not a DIY project. Your insurance company demands a proper alarm system.
 
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Old 08-04-18, 11:18 AM
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I agree with PJmax. There are some wireless commercial fire alarm systems, but no WiFi. However, Fire Alarms can be monitored over the internet.

But it doesn't matter what the National Fire Protection Association allows. In the end, it boils down to the Authority Having Jurisdiction will accept. He/She is the one that ultimately interprets any codes. If he demands yellow wire with blue dots and you can't talk him out of it, all you can do is buy yellow wire and blue permanent markers.

Your AHJ could be a Fire Marshal, your insurance company or a mixture of both.
 
 

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