What is emergency lighting?
These are lighting units mounted on the ceiling with a fluorescent tube inside and several rechargeable batteries. They are connected to the mains and contain a charger which keeps the batteries charged up. They are not usually lit (though there are ordinary light fittings available that also contain batteries for emergency power loss).
When are they used?
If you lose your mains power for some reason, the lights automatically come on, powered by their batteries. Good batteries, fully charged should last 3 hours.
Why would I need them?
If you have a fire, it can burn through ordinary cable and take out your lighting. Corridors may be dark and smoky. The emergency lighting units will allow you and your staff to see your way to emergency exits and escape. Even if it isn't a fire scenario, only a power cut, a building with corridors and stairs in pitch dark is a dangerous place where accidents are much more likely.
How easy are they to install?
Very. They are connected in to the existing wiring, with their own isolator keyswitch, so they can be independently switched on for testing the tube and batteries, or off for maintenance.
Do they need testing?
Yes. They require a monthly "flip" test on and off, to check they function, then a six monthly one hour duration test, and if the building is occupied at night, an annual three hour duration test. The technician switches them on at the isolator switch and leaves them on while carrying out the rest of the fire servicing routines or we can fit "self-testing " units that are programmed to carry out their own tests, and an indicator flashes if they fail.