Anyone know anything about fire/smoke alarm installations? A relative
is getting nagged by the local Fire Dept who want grade F LD2 smoke
detectors installed in an old B&B and have supplied a copy of the
Department for Local Communities booklet “Do You Have Paying Guests?”
This document implies, page 14, that grade F smoke detectors are
“wirelessly connected” at least and a heat detector in the kitchen is
linked in too.
However, another document “FIRE ALARMS IN DWELLINGS” by John Ware at
gives an ambiguous picture that for grade F the detectors may not need
to be linked.
The relevant standard is BS 5839: Part 6: 2004, though as that costs
£200 I am not about to buy it.
So do grade F smoke detectors, the minimum requirement, have to be
interlinked (wireless or cable) or not ?
I'm not sure what grade F is without looking it up, but, yes, I think
they should be linked, and I think you'll need emergency lighting too.
What do the Licensing Authority and Insurers say?
Both may be have more onerous terms than the Legislation.
It isnt particularly expensive to install these items, so should be done
asap if there are paying guests in the house.
To reply by e-mail, change the ' + ' to 'plus'.
Thanks for the pdf. which seems to indicate that interlinks are
required for grade F. The reason the Fire Dept. think it's only grade
F is probably that the B&B is actually very little used, like two
spare bedrooms and 10 guests a year max, really a hobby.
A DIY job looks feasible as linkable battery sensors are easily
obtainable on eBay and fireproof wiring is not needed. Haven't found
wireless ones at a feasible price.
It would be cheaper to close the B&B than get a professional
installation - bit of bureaucratic overkill IMHO.
From the Paying Guests guide:
"Premises similar to a family home … are likely to need an automatic
fire detection system … Grade D LD2 … designed for domestic premises.
In the very smallest accommodation … a connected system of detectors
with a 10-year battery, or radio interlinked detectors [grade F LD2]
may be good enough"
You have to risk assess whether Grade F will be sufficient, you may
decude that you need a Grade D system.
AIUI grade F have to be interlinked but can be battery-operated. Grade
D must be mains-operated with back-up.
Six different grades of fire detection systems are being defined.
Generally speaking, the greater the fire risk the more sophisticated
the system should be. Briefly, these 6 grades are:
Grade A - A full system with control and indicating equipment
installed to BS 5839: Part 1
Grade B - Detectors and sounders using simpler specified equipment
Grade C - Detectors and sounders or alarms with central control
Grade D - Mains powered alarms with an integral stand-by power supply
Grade E - Mains powered alarms with no stand-by power supply
Grade F - Battery powered alarms
Three different categories of life protection systems are defined.
Briefly these are (starting at the highest):
LD1 - Alarms in all circulation spaces that form part of escape routes
and all areas where a fire might start, but not bathrooms, shower
rooms or toilets
LD2 - Alarms in all circulation spaces that form part of escape
routes and rooms or areas that present a high fire risk
LD3 - Alarms in circulation spaces that form part of escape routes
Building Regulations Approved Document B (Fire Safety) minimum
requirements are currently Grade D, LD3, but it also defines that
installation should be to BS 5839 Pt.6 and therefore Grade D, LD2 is
Grade D, LD3
Mains alarms with battery back-up with the mains supply taken from a
lighting circuit or a dedicated circuit from the distribution board
Smoke alarms are required in the circulation spaces such as hallways
and landings. In general optical alarms are recommended e.g. Ei146,
Heat alarm to be installed in the kitchen where there is no door
separating the kitchen from the circulation space, e.g. Ei144, Ei164RC
Smoke and heat alarms must be interconnected
Alarms may be interconnected using radioLINK
Can you get a combined smoke detector and emergency light? Mains powered,
wireless, grade D. Looks okay. Maybe a replacement for the ceiling rose?
My powers of googling just don't seem to be up to the task.
Register as an organ donor with the NHS online. It takes 1 minute and
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At one time Fire Angle did something like that. Mains powered smoke with
rechargeable battery with BC socket and plug all in one unit. Basically
remove bulb and insert the alarm between it and the lamp holder.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
Don't think they still do it, and it was not interlinked.
[Default] On Fri, 25 May 2012 11:36:31 -0700 (PDT), a certain
keyboard and wrote:
LD1, 2 or 3 are the areas covered by the detection; the grades (A to
F) are the types of detectors used. LD2 is generally all circulation
spaces, plus any risk rooms such as kitchens or living rooms. Grade F
is the lowest, and consists of battery powered detectors. The reason,
therefore, that they would be wirelessly interlinked is that they are
not wired in.
A brief reading of the leaflet you quote implies that a Grade F system
would be only suitable in a very small premises (e.g., a holiday
cottage). In the preceeding sentence it describes a system that would
be acceptable in a dwelling house as mains-wired (Grade D).
Personally, I would suggest that a minimum of mains-wired detection is
provided, and that it should cover the hall and landing. If the
kitchen is directly off the escape route and is used for fry-ups,
etc., then a heat detector should be included. Also if there is a
guests' lounge this should be covered too. If the reliability of the
detectors' wireless connection is anything like my router's, I
wouldn't trust my life to it.
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