Have You Tested Your Fire Alarms Lately?

Have You Tested Your Fire Alarms Lately?

Regular commercial fire alarm testing is a crucial step in keeping critical infrastructure, employees, and visitors safe.

Just running periodic fire drills isn’t enough. While fire drills shouldn’t be neglected, routine fire alarm testing is required to make sure that your entire system is still working properly.


The Importance Of Testing Your Fire Alarms

Fire alarms save lives, but only when they are working as intended.

That’s why experts recommend changing the batteries in your smoke detectors twice a year and conducting monthly tests on top of that. But that’s for home use, where your fire alarm system consists of a couple of smoke detectors and possibly a carbon monoxide detector.

Commercial fire alarm systems are a different story.

For those who often find themselves inside your business, they may only see the occasional siren with flashing lights scattered throughout the facility along with periodic handles that can be pulled to trigger the lights and loud noises.

But the truth is that modern commercial fire alarm systems are far more complex than that.


It’s All Connected

Technology has changed rapidly over the years, and several advancements have brought fire alarm systems to the cutting edge of what’s possible.

Further, as technology improves, local codes get updated to require businesses to take advantage of the new life-saving abilities. This ensures that even older buildings have a very sophisticated and modern fire alarm system.

Modern fire alarm systems are not self-contained. They don’t simply make loud noises to notify anyone inside that they must exit the building, or release water and chemicals in an effort to combat the flames.

The new fire alarms are integrated with the other systems included on the property, like your access control, security, gate access, and monitoring stations. This all works together to form what’s known as a life safety system.

What exactly happens during an emergency depends on the systems you have installed and the type of facility you are running.

fire exit sign

One possible scenario is that the fire alarm system triggers the sounders, alerting individuals inside the building that they need to evacuate. At the same time, the fire alarm triggers the access control system to unlock all of the doors and sends an alert to notify the authorities and emergency responders. This type of system is known as a Fail Safe system.

The goal of a Fail Safe system is to get as many people outside of the building as possible, and is often found in buildings that have a large number of people.

On the other end of the spectrum are Fail Secure systems. These are for buildings and facilities where unauthorized people are not allowed, and the number of people on-site is limited. In this case, when the fire alarm is triggered, the system would lock down all of the doors. There will still be ways for individuals who are inside the building to be able to exit and get to safety, but free egress would not be allowed.

Because of how intricate the network of systems can be, it’s important to conduct regular testing of your fire alarm system to make sure everything is in working order.


How Often Should You Test Your Fire Alarm

You want to test your fire alarm system often, so that you can identify any issues before an actual emergency takes place. But you don’t want to test too frequently either, to the point where it becomes a burden to the business and takes away from productivity.

That’s why we always suggest to our clients that the fire alarm system should be tested either annually or biannually. This will ensure that your system continues to work like it is brand new and allows for your alarm to be recertified.

These annual tests are also a great opportunity to conduct a fire drill, so that employees who work inside the building can learn what is expected of them during an actual emergency.


fire hydrant hanging on blue wall

Don’t Neglect Your Life Safety System

Having a fire alarm and life safety system that is up to code and in proper working order can be the difference between life and death during an emergency. It is important for you to work with a trusted professional who knows what is needed, and how your fire alarm system works in tandem with all of your other systems during an emergency.

At Insyte, we’ve been trusted by businesses throughout the Central Florida area to help them design, install, and maintain not only their fire alarm systems, but their security systems, access control, gate access, and more.

Contact us today so we can get to work for you.

High Tech Ways To Restrict Access To Your Business Or Community

High Tech Ways To Restrict Access To Your Business Or Community

Restricting access to your commercial property or residential community is critical. For years, fences, gates, walls, and security guards were the best ways to keep people off your property. But technology has improved drastically over the past several years. Now, computerized gates can restrict entry 24 hours a day, while access control systems and tele-entry methods can be used to easily determine who can enter the property and where on the property they can go.

Insyte Security has been installing and servicing gates, access control, and tele-entry methods to the Central Florida and Orlando areas for eight years. Insyte can offer an assessment of your property, whether it’s a large commercial facility or a private residential community, and offer a complete system that is easy to both operate and maintain.


Why You Want Your Gates, Access Control, and Tele-Entry Run By One System

In a lot of communities and HOAs, many of these pieces already exist and are in place. However, instead of working together as one system, each piece was installed and is maintained by separate vendors. This is fine when everything is working as expected, but can quickly become a nightmare as things break down.

Security gate for neighborhood

For example, let’s say residents of a gated community have been complaining that the gate isn’t working properly. The HOA calls the gate company to have a tech come out to make a repair. However, the gate company says their product is working fine and the issue is with the access control software. This can quickly become a back-and-forth with several different vendors pointing the finger at each other, resulting in frustration, confusion, and a lot of wasted time before the problem is actually solved.

That’s why using Insyte Security to install and maintain the entire system is so critical. If an issue arises, Insyte Security gets to work by making any necessary repairs as quickly as possible. Insyte Security is your “one stop shop” for gates, access control, and tele-entry.


Greater Synergy With Insyte

Not only will Insyte simplify the process of getting your system repaired, but your system will be more efficient and work better. This is because Insyte Security is a systems integrator. By using low voltage connectivity, Insyte can create communication between each system and integrate them into one cohesive unit.

The system is made up of several different elements. The gate is the physical barrier, while access control is the lock and key. And tele-entry allows for a decision-maker to determine whether or not entry should be granted. All modern systems are always tied into some type of safety procedure, allowing to either lock down a facility or open it up to allow for emergency vehicles to enter unobstructed.


The gate is the first thing that residents and guests see, and is the physical barrier preventing access to the community or property. Gates come in several different shapes and sizes, from large metal constructs to simple bars that raise or lower for each vehicle.

One common problem customers have is that of people trying to “beat” their gate, usually by squeezing in behind a vehicle that properly opened the gates. This leads to incidents where it’s very easy for the gate itself to be damaged.

One way to help protect against this is to install security cameras to monitor the gate and all the vehicles as they enter and leave the property. Not only will this act as a deterrent against individuals, but in the event that something happens, there is a recording that can be referenced to determine what exactly occurred and who is at fault.

man using keycard to get access to door

Access Control

Access Control allows for the property or building owner to determine who is allowed to have access at any given time. Advances in technology are making it easier than ever to manage this information, even remotely, and also automate more and more of the process. Access Control comes in many forms, with some of the most popular being digital keypads, card readers, and an RF transmitter and receiver combination.


Tele-entry is the act of letting someone, in real-time, determine whether or not to grant access. This commonly has been done through the phone systems, where the gate and access control tapped into the phone lines. More common now is to use Bluetooth and WiFi. The decision-maker can be anywhere in the world and still grant access if desired.


Installation And Ongoing Support

Insyte Security aims to make it easier than ever for communities, HOAs, and large facilities to get the security they need and restrict access to their property. With a simple one-time project cost for installation or repairs and options for ongoing monthly support, there’s never been a better time to speak with Insyte Security about making sure that your gates, access control, and tele-entry systems are optimized.


17 Business Security Tips to Keep Your Orlando Business Safer

17 Business Security Tips to Keep Your Orlando Business Safer

Whether you are an Orlando retail establishment, commercial office building, or industrial area, you can promote safety and security practices in the office environment.

Here are 17 ways to keep your Orlando business safer in 2017.

1. Dial 911 immediately if you notice suspicious strangers loitering in or near your place of business. Do not approach them yourself.

2. Develop written security policies and an emergency management program, including evacuation procedures.

3. Keep the view in your store clean by not filling windows with multiple displays.

4. Minimize the amount of cash you keep on the premises.

5. Make frequent pick-ups of money from registers and make regular bank deposits.

6. Try not to work alone. The presence of more employees may reduce the incidence of an armed robbery.

7. Install quality locks on doors and windows or invest in an access control system that allows you to quickly update entry/access restrictions over your mobile phone.

8. Invest in a monitored alarm system. Alarm systems are the best defense against property crime and knowing you have a system could be enough to deter criminals.

9. Always use interior and exterior lighting. Lighting may prevent an intruder from concealing his illegal activities. Motion sensor lighting is an inexpensive way to deter crime at your business.

10. Utilize video surveillance. You can also deter criminal activity by simply placing the video surveillance cameras in plain view.

11. Analyze past incidents of crime and violence on the premises, and the immediate surrounding neighborhood, on a regular basis as a means of evaluating the security program

12. Smart sprays and smoke. These deterrents leave a color or ultraviolet sensitive residue that can’t be removed from the robber or shoplifter.

13. Provide adequate illumination in all areas of the building, including hallways, basements, and garages.

14. Advise security personnel to be alert to the presence of suspicious packages or illegally parked or unidentified vehicles, and to bring it to the immediate attention of management.

15. Consider installing security film on lower and first floor windows that face public streets and parking areas.

16. Restrict access to shipping and receiving areas and provide closed-circuit television surveillance.

17. Make sure your Orlando security system provider is reputable. One of the biggest benefits of having a small business security system professionally installed. They are able to identify high risk areas, where you need cameras, and best practices based on your location.


Bonus business security tip: Don’t only point the cameras out. The National Federation of Independent Business indicates annual losses due to employee theft cost U.S. companies $200 billion annually. And more than 60% of small businesses experience employee theft.