One of these bulbs operates on 110 volts of building power. The second bulb comes on only when there is a power outage and low voltage that only operates on the battery. This is why an exit sign that looks to be working normally might not be working at all when there is a power outage because the low voltage bulbs have burned out. In some bigger buildings, the emergency power to exit and emergency lights are provided by a generator.
Testing Of Exit And Emergency Lights
Testing of exit and emergency lights in commercial properties is normally done whenever the emergency generator is tested. It should be done by a licensed electrician. You can contact us for more information about testing this type of system.
Fire Code Required Testing
The fire code requires that exit and emergency lights be tested and inspected at least every month. This test has to include a 30-second test of lights. Also, an annual test is required where the lights have to operate on emergency power for a full 30 minutes. A written record where the testing is documented is also required for a fire inspector to review.
How Do I Test Them?
The majority of exit and emergency lights have a small button that says “push to test” somewhere in the casing. You can push down this button and hold it for 30 seconds to test the battery and bulbs. This works well if you have a small number of devices that can be reached. The lights are supposed to come on and stay at the same brightness level for 30 seconds. If the lights start dimming right away, or some of the bulbs fail, you should definitely call your electrician for repairs.
For exit signs, check if the sign is properly lighted as well when in normal power mode.
A Second Option
There is a second option that might work better for a large number of devices. You can find the fuse or the circuit breaker that supplies power to the exit signs or emergency lights. If they are not properly labeled, you should contact a certified electrician.
You should turn off the circuit breaker and observe the lights to determine if they are working for the annual 30-minute test and the monthly 30-minute test. You have to be cautious because you need to make sure that all data is saved on computers if connected to the same circuit breaker.
If you’re still having issues with it, one of our experienced commercial electricians will be happy to show you how to test during fire inspections.
Why Testing The Lights For Thirty Seconds?
Many batteries can be defective and they will maintain just about enough charge to fully power the bulbs for a few seconds. However, they will lose power quickly. If you fail to test for thirty seconds you will see that the lights do work every month, but they will go out just after a few seconds when you really need them.
When you test the lights for 30 seconds, you can be assured that the batteries are not defective and that they will work in case of an emergency
Exit And Emergency Lights in Florida
If your business requires exit and emergency lights installation, look no further. East-West Electric is here for all of your commercial electrical needs. Contact us at (727) 771-9403 for a quote today!