Fire Alarms & Emergency Lighting in Sevenoaks | 01689 836929

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The primary aims of the British Fire Consortium are maintain high quality technical standards of our members and to actively encourage all our members to obtain third party accreditation to ISO 9001 or equivalent approval bodies recognised by the European co-operation for Accreditation (EA).

Emergency lighting

Emergency lighting is lighting for an emergency situation when the main power supply is cut and any normal illumination fails.† The loss of mains electricity could be the result of a fire or a power cut and the normal lighting supplies fail. This may lead to sudden darkness and a possible danger to the occupants, either through physical danger or panic.

Emergency lighting is normally required to operate fully automatically and give illumination of a sufficiently high level to enable all occupants to evacuate the premises safely. Most new buildings now have emergency lighting installed during construction; the design and type of equipment being specified by the architect in accordance with current Building Regulations and any local authority requirements.

The British Standard provides the emergency lighting designer with clear guidelines to work to. BS 5266-1: 2011 embraces residential hotels, clubs, hospitals, nursing homes, schools and colleges, licensed premises, offices, museums, shops, multi-storey dwellings, etc. Although this standard recommends the types and durations of emergency lighting systems relating to each category of premises, it should be remembered that the standards are the minimum safe standards for these types of building and that a higher standard may be required for a particular installation.

Emergency escape lighting – that part of an emergency lighting system that provides illumination for the safety of people leaving a location or attempting to terminate a potentially dangerous process beforehand. It is part of the fire safety provision of a building and a requirement of The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

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Escape route lighting – that part of an emergency escape lighting system provided to ensure that the means of escape can be effectively identified and safely used by occupants of the building.

Type (power supply)


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Standard wiring material may be used. Failure of mains supply due to cable burn-through will automatically satisfy the requirement for a luminaire to be lit. System can easily be extended with additional luminaires. No special sub-circuit monitoring requirements.

The environmental conditions will vary throughout the system and batteries may be adversely affected by a relatively high or low ambient temperature.

Battery life is limited to between 2 and 4 years, dependent upon the application.

Testing requires isolation and observation of luminaires on an individual basis.

Mode of operation

Maintained or non-maintained is the principal consideration, which is decided by the use of the premises.

Maintained emergency luminaire: a luminaire in which the emergency lighting lamps are on at all times.

Maintained mode is generally used in places of assembly such as theatres, cinemas, clubs and halls; the full list is contained in BS 5266. The lights are typically dimmed when these premises are occupied and the emergency escape lighting prevents total darkness.

Non-maintained emergency luminaire: a luminaire whose emergency lamps only come on when the power supply to the normal lighting fails. Non-maintained is the typical mode in a workplace or similar environment in which artificial lighting is normally deployed while the premises are occupied.

Duration in minutes

The time required to evacuate the premises depends on their size and complexity. The duration itself is dependent not only on evacuation time but also on whether the premises are evacuated immediately the power and normal lighting fails and / or are reoccupied immediately the supply is restored. The minimum duration of an emergency escape lighting system is 1 hour.

A minimum duration of 3 hours should be used for emergency escape lighting if the premises are not evacuated immediately, as in the case of sleeping accommodation, for example, or if the premises will be reoccupied immediately the supply is restored without waiting for the batteries to be recharged.

One hourís duration should only be used if the premises are evacuated immediately on supply failure and not reoccupied until full capacity has been restored to the batteries.

BS 5266 contains detailed information on the recommended duration of systems in various premises.

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Siting of luminaires and emergency signs

Lighting units and signs should be sited so as to clearly show the exit routes leading to the final exits from the premises. Where the exit route or final exit is not readily identifiable, a sign should be utilised rather than a lighting unit. Particular attention should be paid to individual stairways, changes in floor level, corridor intersections, changes in direction, the outside of each final exit, control / plant rooms, lifts, toilet areas over 8m2 (although there is an argument for providing all toilets with public access, and especially those for the disabled, with emergency lighting). Access to fire alarm call points and fire fighting equipment should be clearly illuminated.

Commissioning Certificate and Logbook

BS 5266 and the European Standard both require written declarations of compliance to be available on site for inspection.† These should detail the quality of the installation and its conformance to IEE regulations, including the main circuit of the normal lighting system feeding non-maintained fittings.

A declaration of satisfactory test of operation is necessary and a log of all system tests and results must be maintained. System logbooks, with commissioning forms, testing forms and instructions, should be provided by the installer.


Finally, to ensure that the system remains at full operational status, essential servicing should be specified. This would usually be performed as part of the testing routine, but in the case of consumable items such as replacement lamps, spares should be provided for immediate use.

Servicing and testing

To test an emergency lighting system, a mains power failure on the normal lighting circuit / circuits or individual luminaries must be simulated. This will force the emergency lighting system to operate via the battery supply. This test can be carried out manually or automatically.

Manual testing

A simulated mains failure can be achieved by providing a switch to isolate all lighting circuits / individual circuits / individual luminaires. If manual testing is utilised, the following points should be considered:

In a system with a single switch for the whole building or a large circuit, after simulating the mains failure it is necessary for the tester to walk the whole building or circuit, to check all emergency luminaire are operating correctly. After restoring the mains supply, the whole building or circuit must be walked again, to check that the emergency lights are recharging.

General information about emergency lighting testing

BS EN 50172:2004 / BS 5266-8:2004 (Emergency escape lighting systems) specifies the minimum provision and testing of emergency lighting for different premises. Additional information on servicing can be found in BS 5266-1: 2011 (Code of practice for the emergency lighting of premises).

The system should include adequate facilities for testing the system condition. These need to be appropriate for the specific site and should be considered as part of the system design. Discussions with the user or system designer should identify the calibre and reliability of staff available to do the testing and the level of difficulty in performing the test

Discharge tests need to be undertaken outside normal working hours. In buildings that are permanently occupied, the test should be phased so only alternate luminaires are tested.

When automatic testing devices (self-testing emergency lights) are used, the information shall be recorded monthly and annually. For all other systems, the tests shall be carried out as described below and the results recorded.

Regular servicing is essential. The occupier / owner of the premises shall appoint a competent person to supervise servicing of the system. This person shall be given sufficient authority to ensure the carrying out of any work necessary to maintain the system in correct operational mode.

Routine inspections and tests

Where national regulations do not apply, the following shall be met:

Because of the possibility of a failure of the normal lighting supply occurring shortly after a period of testing of the emergency lighting system or during the subsequent recharge period, all full duration tests shall, wherever possible, be undertaken just before a time of low risk to allow for battery recharge. Alternatively, suitable temporary arrangements shall be made until the batteries have been recharged.

The following minimum inspections and tests shall be carried out at the intervals recommended below. The regulating authority may require specific tests.

Monthly emergency lighting tests

All emergency lighting systems must be tested monthly. The test is a short functional test in accordance with BS EN 50172:2004 / BS 5266-8:2004.

The period of simulated failure should be sufficient for the purpose of this test while minimising damage to the system components, e.g. lamps. During this period, all luminaires and signs shall be checked to ensure that they are present, clean and functioning correctly.


A test for the full rated duration of the emergency lights (e.g. 3 hours) must be carried out. The emergency lights must still be working at the end of this test.

The result must be recorded and, if failures are detected, these must be remedied as soon as possible.

Fire Alarm Installations and Maintenance
Domestic and Commercial Fire Alarm Systems
Conventional Fire Alarm System (Non-Addressable)
Addressable Fire Alarm Systems
Wireless Fire Alarm Systems
Emergency Lighting (Maintained and Non-Maintained
Fire Exit Signs (Maintained and Non-Maintained)
Heat and Smoke Detectors Alarms
Fire Alarm Call Points
Magnetic Smoke Door Holders: Wall or floor mounted
Fire Risk Assessment

We provide free, no obligation quotations and can carry out property Fire Risk Assessments.


We install, maintain and commission Fire Alarm Systems and Emergency Lighting from the following manufacturers:

Advanced Electronics
Cooper Firedex
Fike Rafik TwinFlex
Gents Xenex
Haes Systems
JSB Firedex

Other Services:

Quality electrical services covering London and the South East

With experience gained through installing and maintaining fire protection systems and security systems, we're able to offer dedicated electrical services. carried out by anyone of fully qulaified electrical engineers.

Our qualified electrical engineers offer a wide range of services, including, electrical installations, rewiring and maintenance.

Our electrical work includes:

PAT testing
Electrical Rewiring
Electrical Installations
Fuse box Installations
Lighting and Power Installations
Electrical Maintenance

All Electrical Installations

Contact Kent Fire Alarms

For a free quotation and additional information about any of our fire and security alarm installation services, contact us using the details below.

Telephone: 01689 836929




Office Hours:

Monday - Friday: 8am - 5pm
We provide a 24 hour call out service for contracted customers.

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In the event of a detector or callpoint being activated, the panel is able to determine which circuit contains the triggered device and thereby identify which zone the fire alarm has come from.

It is then necessary to manually search the indicated zone to pinpoint the exact cause of the fire alarm.

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The philosophy of a conventional system revolves around dividing the building into a number of areas called zones ó the detectors and callpoints within each zone are then wired on dedicated circuits.

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Greater London Area
Barking and Dagenham, Barnet, Bexley, Brent, Bromley, Camden, City of London, City of Westminster, Croydon, Ealing, Enfield, Greenwich, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Haringey, Harrow, Havering, Hillingdon, Hounslow, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Kingston, Lambeth, Lewisham, Merton, Newham, Redbridge, Richmond, Southwark, Sutton, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest and Wandsworth. Surrey Area Camberley, Dorking, Egham, Epsom, Esher, Farnham, Godalming, Guildford, Haslemere, Horley, Leatherhead, Redhill, Reigate, Staines, Walton on Thames and Weybridge.

Essex Area

Basildon, Billericay, Braintree, Brentwood, Chelmsford, Colchester, Epping, Grays, Hadleigh, Halstead, Harlow, Harwich, Ilford, Loughton, Maldon, Rayleigh, Rochford, Romford, Southend on Sea, Thaxted, Tilbury, Waltham Abbey, Walton on the Naze, Wickford and Witham.

Kent Area
Ashford, Broadstairs, Canterbury, Chatham, Crayford, Dartford, Deal, Dover, Edenbridge, Erith, Faversham, Folkestone, Gillingham, Gravesend, Herne Bay, Hythe, Lydd, Maidstone, Margate, Orpington, Ramsgate, Rochester, Sandwich, Sevenoaks, Sheerness, Sittingbourne, Southborough, Strood, Swanley, Tenterden, Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells, Westerham and Whitstable.

Surrey Ares
Camberley, Dorking, Egham, Epsom, Esher, Farnham, Godalming, Guildford, Haslemere, Horley, Leatherhead, Redhill, Reigate, Staines, Walton on Thames abd Weybridge.

Sussex Ares
Burgess Hill, Crawley, East Grinstead, Horsham, Berkshire, Bracknell, Maidenhead, Reading, Slough and Wokingham.