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Obsolete Fire Alarm System

jcl2022

Registered User
Joined
Sep 9, 2020
Messages
5
Location
Boise Idaho
The entity (educational) I work for is in the planning stages of completely remodeling one of their buildings. They are planning on installing a fire sprinkler system (building currently does not have one) but not upgrade the existing obsolete building fire alarm system. Is this allowed or do they need to upgrade the fire alarm system.
 

Ty J.

Sawhorse
Joined
Aug 2, 2017
Messages
1,432
Location
Washington State
AHJ will most likely require a flow switch to activate the alarm notification system when fire flow is detected.

Recommend that you contact the local AHJ, particularly the Fire Marshall.
 

cda

Sawhorse
Joined
Oct 19, 2009
Messages
18,672
Location
Basement
The entity (educational) I work for is in the planning stages of completely remodeling one of their buildings. They are planning on installing a fire sprinkler system (building currently does not have one) but not upgrade the existing obsolete building fire alarm system. Is this allowed or do they need to upgrade the fire alarm system.

Minimum is stated by Ty J,


You do not say what the use of the building will be once remodeled.

Plus have many sq ft is the entire building??????????
 

jcl2022

Registered User
Joined
Sep 9, 2020
Messages
5
Location
Boise Idaho
I realize they'll have to monitor the tamper and flow switches. Just not sure this old Simplex panel can handle any additions. The backup is on an old floppy disk. Guess the best bet is have the local rep check the panel and get his opinion of its capabilities.
 

jcl2022

Registered User
Joined
Sep 9, 2020
Messages
5
Location
Boise Idaho
Welcome also, ,

How did you find us?
Posed the same question on Google and found you. It's a two-story educational building. Not sure of the square feet. They are planning on an extensive remodel and adding a sprinkler system besides a small addition.
 

my250r11

Sawhorse
Joined
Feb 16, 2015
Messages
740
Location
Roswell,NM
No near enough info on building or what code cycle to properly answer this question. The RDP and or FPE should be able to answer this from a code prospective. The Fire Marshal is also a great source. May have some local or State amendments also.
 

mtlogcabin

Sawhorse
Joined
Oct 17, 2009
Messages
7,744
Location
Big Sky Country
Simple answer yes you will have to upgrade the existing system to meet the visual notification requirements for accessibility and the fire code requirements for emergency voice alarm notification.

2018 IEBC The existing building requires you follow today's adopted code for an alteration 3 remodel which this sounds like it qualifies as.

904.2 Fire alarm and detection systems.
Fire alarm and detection shall be provided in accordance with Section 907 of the International Building Code as required for new construction.

904.2.1 Manual fire alarm systems.
Where required by the International Building Code, a manual fire alarm system shall be provided throughout the work area. Alarm notification appliances shall be provided on such floors and shall be automatically activated as required by the International Building Code.

Exceptions:

1. Alarm-initiating and notification appliances shall not be required to be installed in tenant spaces outside of the work area.

2. Visual alarm notification appliances are not required, except where an existing alarm system is upgraded or replaced or where a new fire alarm system is installed.

904.2.2 Automatic fire detection.
Where required by the International Building Code for new buildings, automatic fire detection systems shall be provided throughout the work area.

ICC/ANSI
701.1 Scope.
Communications elements and features required to be accessible by the scoping provisions adopted by the administrative authority shall comply with the applicable provisions of Chapter 7.

702 Alarms

702.1 General.
Accessible audible and visible alarms and notification appliances shall be installed in accordance with NFPA 72 listed in Section 105.2.2, be powered by a commercial light and power source, be permanently connected to the wiring of the premises electric system, and be permanently installed.

2018 IFC
1103.7.1 Group E.
A fire alarm system shall be installed in existing Group E occupancies in accordance with Section 907.2.3.

907.2.3 Group E.
A manual fire alarm system that initiates the occupant notification signal utilizing an emergency voice/alarm communication system meeting the requirements of Section 907.5.2.2 and installed in accordance with Section 907.6 shall be installed in Group E occupancies. Where automatic sprinkler systems or smoke detectors are installed, such systems or detectors shall be connected to the building fire alarm system.

Exceptions:

1. A manual fire alarm system is not required in Group E occupancies with an occupant load of 50 or less.

2. Emergency voice/alarm communication systems meeting the requirements of Section 907.5.2.2 and installed in accordance with Section 907.6 shall not be required in Group E occupancies with occupant loads of 100 or less, provided that activation of the manual fire alarm system initiates an approved occupant notification signal in accordance with Section 907.5.

3. Manual fire alarm boxes are not required in Group E occupancies where all of the following apply:

3.1. Interior corridors are protected by smoke detectors.

3.2. Auditoriums, cafeterias, gymnasiums and similar areas are protected by heat detectors or other approved detection devices.

3.3. Shops and laboratories involving dusts or vapors are protected by heat detectors or other approved detection devices.

4. Manual fire alarm boxes shall not be required in Group E occupancies where all of the following apply:

4.1. The building is equipped throughout with an approved automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1.

4.2. The emergency voice/alarm communication system will activate on sprinkler water flow.

4.3. Manual activation is provided from a normally occupied location.
 

cda

Sawhorse
Joined
Oct 19, 2009
Messages
18,672
Location
Basement
Agree with above again

If it will be educational a fire alarm system is required

Time to upgrade

DEPENDING on some variables,,,,

Might have to be voice evac/ emergency system
 

jcl2022

Registered User
Joined
Sep 9, 2020
Messages
5
Location
Boise Idaho
Every couple of years they give us enough money to upgrade the fire alarm system in one of the (88) buildings (Academics, Housing and Auxiliary bldgs) with systems in them. This particular building is not on the list yet so they are trying to get off cheap and not update the fire alarm system when they do the remodel. They are planning on just adding the tamper and flow switches for the new sprinkler system to the existing antiquated fire alarm system.
 

cda

Sawhorse
Joined
Oct 19, 2009
Messages
18,672
Location
Basement
Found the numbers: 2 stories, roughly 60,000 total square feet.

Yea, if they have enough money to remodel, time to upgrade the fire alarm system!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Plus, only makes since to do it while they are remodeling , and not try to do a retro fit.

Do you have any voice evac systems yet??


Do any building plans have to be approved by the local building official and fire dept??????
 

Paul Sweet

Sawhorse
Joined
Oct 17, 2009
Messages
1,332
Location
Richmond, Va
How much of the remodeling is reconfiguration of spaces, as opposed to finishes and mech/elec upgrades? If the "Work Area" (reconfigured spaces) is less than 50% it's a Level 2 alteration.
 
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