Equipping a building with a fire alarm system is absolutely essential. These systems have prevented thousands of fire accidents and have saved numerous lives.
Various types of fire alarm systems have emerged over the years. Wireless fire alarm system has been gaining popularity over the traditional wired ones owing to a number of factors. It derives its name from its ability to trigger the other units of the system through wireless signals when there is a fire.
There are a number of advantages and disadvantages associated with wireless fire alarm systems. Let’s take a look at these in details.
Pros of a Wireless Fire Alarm System
- Ability to Reposition Easily
As the name suggests, there are no cables involved in wireless fire alarm systems. This gives the system the biggest advantage of repositioning. If you decide to move to another apartment, you can easily take the wireless fire alarm system with you instead of investing in a brand new one. Additionally, if you wish to renovate your house, you can move the wireless fire alarms around without any hassle.
- Easy Installation
Owing to the omission of cables, the wireless fire alarm systems are easy to install. This reduces the effort of running a cable throughout your house. All that needs to be done is fixing the devices of the system at the locations you wish. Once all the units are in place, these can be connected to each other and you are all set. Additionally, this also eliminates the cable expenses.
- Improved Protection
In the case of wired fire alarm systems, there is always the risk of cables getting severed owing to a fire. In that event, the alarm may not sound in all the rooms, thus endangering lives. With wireless fire alarms, this risk is eliminated completely.
- Works When the Power is Out
Most wireless alarms either run on batteries or come with a battery backup. Thus, they do not rely entirely on your house’s electrical system. This way, these systems continue to provide protection from fire even when the power is out. Therefore, a wireless fire alarm system always provides uninterrupted service.
Cons of Wireless Fire Alarm Systems
- Chances of Malfunctioning
If a burnt bread sets off the fire alarm system, all the units connected to this system will sound the alarm. Additionally, any malfunction like a false alarm could also turn out to be quite inconvenient. The only way to stop the alarms would be by disabling each unit separately. In that case, a central control unit can come in handy if you wish to disable all the alarms at once.
- Limited Range
Wireless fire alarm systems have range restrictions. This means that for large areas, this system may not be able to transmit the information of the occurrence of a fire to the main control panel. As a result, the alarms may not go off, thus increasing the chances of a fire hazard.
Note: You can solve this problem easily by installing a wireless signal booster.
- Running Out of Batteries
One of the major drawbacks of a wireless fire alarm system is that it runs on batteries. While this can work to your advantage in the events of blackouts or power-cuts, it is also a serious cause of concern since the system needs to be monitored from time to time for the requirement of battery replacement. If you are a little late in replacing the batteries, your alarm system will not be able to warn you of a possible fire.
- Inability to Alert the Authorities
Most wireless fire alarms do not come with the facility of notifying the fire department as soon as there is an occurrence of fire. While these may alert the occupants of the house of the fire by sounding the alarms, you would have to find a way to contact the authorities yourself as soon as you escape, to douse the fire and determine the fire’s origin and cause.
Wireless fire alarms are increasingly gaining popularity over the years. They are cost effective and eliminate maintenance hassles by a considerable degree, but the disadvantages associated with them are quite grave too.
Therefore, before buying, it is always recommended to weigh out the pros and cons, understand your requirements, have an idea of how it works and buy the one that is best suited for you.