What Are The Different Types of Fire Alarm Systems for your Las Vegas Business?

fie alarm - the kinds of Las Vegas you should be familiar

Whether you are looking for commercial or residential fire alarms in Las Vegas, a solid system goes a long way in creating a safe living environment. As a Las Vegas property owner, it’s also worth knowing that it’s better to purchase a comprehensive safety system than spend all your money to repair damages from a fire.

The most common misconception that people make, however, is that all fire alarms are the same. The fact is that there are different kinds of Las Vegas fire alarms, and knowing how each one works plays a crucial role in deciding which fire alarm system works best for you. A reputable fire inspection company should help you choose which system suits your property.

The Four Types of Fire Alarms

The four main types of fire alarms are photoelectric, ionization, combination, and heat fire alarm systems. Keep reading below to find out more about how each of these fire alarm systems works.


Ionization fire alarm systems run due to a steady electrical current flowing between two metal plates. When smoke enters the device chamber, the electrical current is interrupted, setting off the fire alarm. This kind of detector works well for promptly spotting flames that are burning quickly.

Because of this, ionization fire alarm systems tend to have a more sophisticated design. These systems work especially well in a residential setting, as the smaller space means that fires can spread quicker than in a big commercial building.

These fire alarm systems are best at detecting fires caused by combustibles such as:

  • Gasoline
  • Newspapers
  • Cooking grease


Photoelectric detectors operate by using a light beam as opposed to electricity. When smoke enters the chamber, the light beam is dispersed, which subsequently triggers the alarm.

Compared to an ionization detector, this kind of equipment is effective in detecting smaller flames. This is because a slow blazing, smoldering fire produces smoke very differently from a fire that is rapidly spreading. Smoldering fires also burn for much longer.

They have a reputation for being extremely dependable and rarely resulting in false alarms. As a result, firefighters and emergency responders are able to respond to a distress call much quicker with this kind of fire alarm system.

These fire alarm systems are best at detecting fires caused by fixtures such as:

  • Bedding
  • Carpeting
  • Curtains


A combination ionization and photoelectric smoke detector is a favorite of many reputable fire safety companies in Las Vegas and is regarded as the safest option for consumers.

When a fire burns in a closed space, the oxygen in the space progressively depletes and is replaced by carbon dioxide. Once this buildup occurs, the fuel can no longer burn, which results in the production of carbon monoxide.

With sensing technologies that cooperate to detect fires and odorless carbon dioxide gas, these combination alarms are supposed to offer the protection of two devices in one system.


Heat detectors detect changes in air temperature caused by flames. Although such systems have been known to generate a few false alarms, they take longer to respond compared to other smoke detectors.

When the devices detect a rapid rise in temperature or reach a preset temperature, they sound an alarm. Heat detectors can also be linked to control panels, which sound an alarm, activate water sprinklers, or call the fire department.

It is also worth noting that with heat systems, false alarms may be triggered in abnormally steamy, dusty, or humid buildings. As such, these are best suited for buildings that are not continuously occupied, such as warehouses or storage facilities.

Need More Info?

There are a lot of factors that come to play when choosing between the different kinds of Las Vegas fire alarms. Aside from the type of property (i.e. a small residential house versus an apartment complex), you’ll also have to assess your surroundings to determine the places wherein a fire could start.

As a trusted fire protection company in Las Vegas, we understand how important it is to buy a fire alarm system–and get it right the first time.

We are happy to walk you through all of our fire alarm options and answer any questions you might have. Contact Sting Alarm to learn more.

Your Options for a Fire Alarm System for your Commercial Las Vegas Property

fire alarm system for your commercial Las Vegas property

Fires cause devastating effects–they damage valuables, property, and even take lives. Therefore, its essential that you have fire safety systems in place to ensure that in case a fire does inevitably happen to your commercial property, the risks are extremely low. Now that you’ve decided to have an updated fire alarm system, what options do you have? In general, there are three types of fire alarm monitoring systems, namely: ionization, photoelectric, and combination alarms. But what are the differences? Keep on reading to find out.

Ionization Fire Alarms

Ionization fire alarms are most suited for detecting flaming fires. Inside an ionization fire alarm is a small piece of radioactive material that sits between two electronically charged plates. The placement of this material causes a constant current of ionized air between the two plates. When smoke enters between the ionized current, it interrupts the current and sets the alarm off. These alarm systems are better for detecting fast, flaming fires.

Photoelectric Fire Alarms

Photoelectric fire alarms are the better option for detecting smoldering fires. The smoke that is produced by a slow flaming, smoldering fire is very different from a raging flame fire. A photoelectric fire alarm uses a beam of light that goes through a chamber away from a light sensor. When smoke enters the chamber, it reflects the light towards the sensor, and triggers the alarm to sound.

Combination Fire Alarms

Combination alarms have both ionization and photoelectric fire detecting technologies rolled into one. While this fire alarm type sounds like the best of both worlds, it actually isn’t. Combination alarms aren’t as great as one detection method or the other, compared to the single units. For maximum home protection, it might be best to have all types of fire alarms in your building.

Initiating Devices 

Initiating devices are the equipment that activate the system in case of an emergency. These devices can either be manual or automatic.


A manual pull station is an example of a manual initiating device that requires someone to physically pull the lever, push a button, or break glass to manually initiate the alarm.


Automatic initiation devices include detection devices for smoke, gas, flame, and heat. Initiation devices can be either addressable or not addressable, with addressable devices signaling the exact location of the emergency. Your fire alarm system provider can help you determine which type of initiation devices your establishment requires and where they should be located for maximum safety and code compliance. Now, if you own a commercial property in Las Vegas, Nevada, and are looking to replace or buy a new commercial fire alarm system, then look no further because we can help. Here at Sting Alarm, we have years of experience under our belt. We offer a wide variety of commercial fire alarm systems for business owners like you. A top-end fire alarm set-up can alert you the instant there is smoke, heat, or fire affecting any room in your property.

If you have commercial properties in Las Vegas, Nevada, you should know how important it is to have safeguards in place in case something untoward happens to ensure everyone’s safety, as well as to protect your property. One of these safeguards is installing fire alarm systems in your building. Make sure your Las Vegas commercial building has adequate fire protection by choosing us as your fire safety provider today. At Sting Alarm, we offer fire protection services and more in Las Vegas.

If you’re looking to purchase a fire alarm for your Las Vegas-area building, look no further than Sting Alarm. We are a fire alarm installation company based in Las Vegas, Nevada. What sets us apart from other fire alarm retailers is our commitment to providing a wide selection of fire alarms for properties like apartment complexes, and larger commercial spaces. More specifically, we regularly outfit schools, hospitals, industrial buildings, and hotels with fire alarm systems.

When you hire us for your fire alarm system needs, we will immediately do a full inspection of your current fire alarm system. We will conduct an onsite assessment, review maintenance and warranty records, and conduct a variety of other tests that will determine whether your fire alarm system is in good condition or if it needs to be replaced or repaired. Interested in the services we offer? Don’t hesitate to reach out to us at (702) 885-3802 today.

About Sting Alarm

Sting Alarm is a premier security company that provides turnkey and custom security solutions for large businesses in Las Vegas. Since 2004, we have been trusted by casinos, large corporate campuses, and enterprise operations.