How Thunderstorms Can Affect Your Fire Alarm System

Installing a fire alarm system is one thing, but making sure it is in good working condition is something many homeowners tend to pay less attention to until it is too late.

Thunderstorms are a rather frequent occurrence during the summer, and the bad weather condition can negatively impact the fire alarm systems.

Power surges and power cuts caused by sudden lightning strikes can affect these systems, but fortunately, you can do something about it. 

Power Surges

Your fire alarm system can act as a pathway for lightning from seasonal thunderstorms to enter your building. The effect of the high current coursing through your home can cause power surges. 

A building doesn’t necessarily have to take a direct hit from lightning to get damaged. All it takes is a device around the building that conducts electricity. This is where a fire alarm system can be a likely pathway for power surges.

To avoid the damaging effects of power surges from lightning, it is best to hire an experienced fire alarm professional to install surge protectors on your alarm system. 

Fire alarm professionals, like Fire-Alert, can determine the best place to install surge protectors. This could be on the panel circuits of the primary fire alarm system, strobe notification appliances, smoke detectors, pull stations, or some other fire alarm initiating devices.

False Alarm

Thunderstorms can set off fire alarms or smoke detectors. This is because lightning is a powerful current that causes a strong electromagnetic pulse (EMP) that can be picked by any conductor, including unshielded wires.

Some fire alarm systems can quickly sense the EMP from lightning bolts in nearby wires and get fooled into thinking there is a fire hazard. 

But you could be dealing with defective batteries if your smoke detectors keep going off unexpectedly even in good weather.

It is common for people to change their fire alarm batteries when they move into a new house and then forget them after that. Little wonder their alarm initiating devices develop fault over time. 

Power Outages

Bad weather can also cause disruptions such as power outages. Usually, this should not be a problem for your fire alarm system if the power cut is short-lived and you have a backup battery in place.

But many people do not remember to properly maintain their backup batteries until there is an emergency. Your fire alarm system cannot function if there is no secondary source of power or if the batteries are not fully charged and functional during power cuts. 

Your system requires routine inspections to prevent battery fails and to ensure that your secondary power source will work when the need arises. 

Fire Safety Services from Fire-Alert

With over 35 years of experience, Fire-Alert is a reliable leader in the fire industry. If you need help with fire safety services and devices, get in touch with us today!