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NOTE: This is an unformatted excerpt from our online fire protection training library.

Authorities and Requirements

Fire Alarm System Fundamentals

Storage Batteries and Charging

Storage batteries must be marked with their date of manufactureThis is something that an inspector must question and note on inspection reports.. Many equipment vendors assign a recommended replacement schedule to their batteries, and five-year replacement is generally the ruleThis is not a code requirement. NFPA 72 requires that batteries be replaced when inspection and testing reveal that they can no longer meet the requirements of the system and their original criteria..However, batteries may sit on a shelf for a period of time prior to installation. Thus, the date marked on the battery, from which replacement will be determined, must be the date of manufacture, not the date of installation. Batteries must be permanently marked using the month/year format.

“Off-gassing”Off-gassing typically results from charging the batteries, but it can also be a problem with older batteries that are in need of replacement. Sealed lead acid batteries are subject to releasing hydrogen gas upon charging, but they may also release sulfuric acid vapor upon over-charging. of the batteries cannot be allowed to affect the operation of the control unit. If the batteries are not a sealed type, or are a type that can release gases, they cannot be installed in the fire alarm control panel. They must be put in a separate cabinet.

If the batteries and charger are located remote from the fire alarm panel, their location has to be marked in the panel. Batteries have to be recharged in a period that doesn’t exceed 48 hours, once they have been totally drained.

Notice the discoloration of the battery case. The batteries in this picture were connected improperly, causing the batteries to fail. The discoloration is from the "off-gassing" of the electrolyte.
NOTE: This is an unformatted excerpt from our online fire protection training library.

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