Spotlight on Software: Lite-Configurator Now Supports SWIFT™ Wireless

Lite-Configurator is an easy to use FREE program that allows you to configure a bill of materials for Fire-Lite’s addressable and conventional control panels. The Lite-Configurator tool Version 2.6.2 has been updated to include the new SWIFT™ Wireless addressable devices. In addition to SWIFT™ Wireless support, we have improved the support for low frequency by updating the B200SR-LF Low Frequency Sounder Base and the new ISO-6 Six Fault Isolator Module.

With the Lite-Configurator tool, you can:

  • Create a bill of material for addressable and conventional control panels
  • Select and edit parts from the parts catalog
  • Generate a formatted report with a customized header from your bill of materials
  • Export your bill of materials to MS Excel or MS Access
  • Create a full set of battery calculations based on your configuration
  • Print data sheets from the Bill of Materials screen.

To get started with the latest version of Lite-Configurator, click here to download the software.

Visit our website to learn more about Windows®-based software tools designed to assist Fire-Lite customers in the day-to-day business of selling and supporting fire alarm systems.

 

About the Author
George Goral is a NICET Level II Fire Products Application Specialist for Honeywell Fire Safety. He has 8 years of experience in technical support of fire alarm control panels including software support and the new SWIFT Wireless product line.

New Fiber Choice for Lite-Connect

The Fire-Lite Alarms’ Lite-Connect solution enables Fire-Lite fire alarm control panels in multiple buildings to consolidate central station communications by allowing a “main” panel to become the communicator for the complete system. The connections between the fire alarm control panels are made via fiber to avoid the troubles associated with running copper underground between buildings. To add to this innovative solution, Lite-Connect now supports 50/125um multi-mode fiber.

Now with the choice of 62.5/125um multi-mode fiber and 50/125um multi-mode fiber (LC connectors), you can meet your installation needs on top of the benefits of consolidating the central station communications to a single MS-9050UD fire alarm control panel. Lite-Connect offers:

  • Reduce Callbacks. Running wire underground to connect panels together in remote buildings is prone to ground faults and lighting strikes. Fiber-optic cable eliminates these potential issues.
  • Less Phone Lines. Save the end user money on additional phone lines, monitoring costs, and monitor modules. Whether you are monitoring individual buildings or consolidating communications with the Signaling Line Circuit (SLC) from a main panel.
  • Faster First Responder Response. If monitoring via SLC and monitor modules, Alarm, Trouble, and Supervisory are typically what is available. Lite-Connect offers zone and point information to help first responders pinpoint the location of the alarm and leads to a faster response.
  • Central Station Reporting. Easy to read Central Station reports that are generated based on the system programming for the specific project geared towards reducing installation time.

We are also pleased to share that Lite-Connect solution has earned a Campus Safety BEST Award in the Fire/Life Safety Category! For more information, feel free to view our short video or visit www.firelite.com.

 

 

About the Author
Richard Conner is the Director of Marketing for Fire-Lite Alarms, Silent Knight and Honeywell Power. Richard joined Honeywell in 2002 and has over 15 years of experience in the fire alarm industry in Marketing, Engineering, and Product Support positions. Richard is responsible for developing brand strategy and marketing programs for all brands.

Think Outside the ‘Box’

Offer fire alarm system inspections and testing

A properly installed fire alarm system is critical to satisfying the life safety requirements of your customer’s protected premises. The main control and communications must meet or exceed your local code requirements.

But once you are done specifying and installing the solution, are you looking at other possible ways to increase your recurring monthly revenue (RMR) from these systems? Of course you know regular testing and inspection is required of fire alarm systems. And if you aren’t offering testing and inspection services, you’re doing a disservice to your customer — and your cash flow.

Regular testing and inspection is mandated by NFPA 72 standards, which covers fire detection, signaling and emergency communication. Life safety systems have to operate and notify at a moment’s notice when a fire event occurs.

Testing and inspection intervals vary, depending on the applicable standard and the type of system, i.e., fire alarm versus sprinkler. Fire detection systems must be inspected at least annually, and of course the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) can require more frequent testing depending on the type of occupancy that the system is installed in. The state fire alarm code sets the parameters for minimum requirements for testing and inspection, with the AHJ having the final say.

Not only does regular testing and inspection keep your customer’s solution in top running condition and able to immediately send out an alarm, warning or trouble signal, but it increases your revenue stream and keeps you in contact with the customer. There’s a good chance they will ask for peripherals or other devices when you visit them for this regular testing – or perhaps inquire about upgrades to enhance their system solution.

Carefully weigh your costs
Establishing the proper charges for testing and inspection depends on many variables and requires serious thought by the fire alarm systems company. Plan out your testing and inspection fully or you will quickly lose sight of the true costs. Assemble your costs in a spreadsheet, considering:

  • mileage, wear and tear on vehicles
  • cost to take a technician from a new job versus the inspection – if you don’t have a dedicated field representative for testing tasks
  • loaded labor rate (includes not only labor but everything you offer your technicians, including benefits, etc.)
  • time expected for the inspection
  • Additional equipment needed to effectively conduct test and inspect services, such as ladders or even lifts to properly test smoke detectors and sensors

All the little items can add up quickly, so make sure your pricing is accurate and on target.

Good planning will more than pay for itself. RMR for fire alarm testing and inspection can range from as low as $8 per month to the thousands, depending on the customer, the facility and the nature of the installed system. Make sure you have a solid plan to work with your customers regularly to keep their systems up and running.

What do you use to track your RMR? Any suggestions to those not currently planning? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

About the Author
Deborah L. O’Mara is a journalist specializing in the burglar and fire alarm and systems integration industries and the managing director of DLO Communications in Chicago.

 

Resources from Fire-Lite:
The Other Side of RMR Webinar Recording
Fire-Lite Product and Software Training