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Plymouth Community Homes To Install New AICO 160e Alarms In To 15,000 Properties

AICO alarm at Plymouth Community HomesPlymouth Community Homes has begun a programme to replace their smoke alarms with Aico’s new 160e Series of alarms.  The alarms will be fitted in to all 15,000 properties over five years.

Plymouth Community Homes, rated as one of the top 25% of housing association nationally*, is a long standing Aico customer. They have installed Aico’s mains powered smoke and, more recently, Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarms to protect tenants over many years.  The existing optical smoke and heat alarms are reaching the end of their lives and will be replaced with Aico’s new premium range, the 160e Series.

Building on the success of its 160RC predecessor, 160e alarms provide improved performance in response time and resistance to false alarms; all in a modern, sleek design (up to 18% slimmer), whilst maintaining the same easi-fit footprint making it simple to upgrade. These mains powered alarms come with 10 year rechargeable Lithium cells to provide back-up in the event of a mains failure.

The 160e Series alarms are compatible with latest technology, RadioLINK+, evolved from the award winning wireless alarm interconnection RadioLINK - all that is required is a plug in RadioLINK+ module, the Ei100MRF. This negates the need for a separate RadioLINK base, used with previous 160RC models, saving on installation time and costs.  RadioLINK+ allows alarms and accessories on the system to communicate with each other using Radio Frequency (RF) signals rather than hard wiring.  

RadioLINK+ also allows for whole system data extraction, which Plymouth Community Homes intends to put to good use.  Information such as the number and location of alarms, number of tests carried out and RF signal strength between alarms can all be accessed securely from within or even outside a property.  This information will be stored by Plymouth Community Homes on its asset register as part of the tenancy files.

Likewise, information from Aico’s mains powered battery back-up Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarms, the Ei262, installed in Plymouth Community Homes’ properties is also being stored on the asset register.  Real time data is obtained from individual alarms through Aico’s multiple award-winning AudioLINK technology.  All that is required is an AudioLINK enabled Aico Alarm, a tablet or smartphone and the free AudioLINK App which converts the data into an Alarm Status Report.  

The AudioLINK Alarm Status Report, which is simple to review and store, is created for the life of the Alarm and is colour coded to identify the urgency of any issue. The Report displays useful information about the Alarm, such as battery life, alarm sensor status, number of times tested and removed; and detection levels of CO, including background CO, with details of when it occurred - all in a simple format.

For Plymouth Community Homes, AudioLINK technology has proven extremely cost effective, as Roger Hewitt, Electrical and Asbestos Manager, explains: “Traditionally if the CO alarm was activated we would normally have to send in a team to investigate it, but with AudioLINK a single person can interrogate the device, identify the cause of the alarm and what action needs to be taken.  It’s a really useful time saving device.”

Both CO and smoke alarms are connected to an Aico Alarm Controller, the Ei450, which is wall-mounted in each property.  The Controller allows residents to quickly locate the exact alarm which has detected the fire or CO leak and take action.  The Controller is completely wireless and can also be used to test and silence all the alarms on the system.  “The Alarm Controller provides better control of devices for tenants” states Roger.  “It’s easy for them to understand and it looks nice which means tenants don’t mind having it on their wall.”

A wholly owned subsidiary of Ei Electronics, Aico is a market leader in residential fire and CO protection in the UK. All alarms are designed and built in Ireland specifically to meet the UK standards and regulations. With more mains powered domestic smoke alarms installed in the UK’s social housing than any other manufacturer, Aico is tried, tested and trusted.

* STAR satisfaction survey 2015


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