Most fire alarm systems for the average home only need to have a sound alarm device to warn of impending fire. But the fire alarm systems for buildings larger than that, warehouses or office buildings for example; they need not just an alarm horn, but they need to pinpoint the location of the fire, so that firemen can head staight to the trouble spot. The best device for this purpose is the fire alarm annunciator.
Fire alarm annunciators come in different models, but their main purpose is to conveniently show the location of the fire. In a tall skycraper with many floors, you begin to appreciate the value of the annunciator in saving the fire department valuable time in determining the location of the fire breakout.
The good annunciators have a touch screen panel that shows the building or floor layout, and any trouble spots. Once the alarms go off, the annunciator will show the location of the fire. Just a fast glance, and the building security staff and firemen can immediately deploy to the trouble spot, and also shut off the alarm by hitting the button on the control panel.
The fire alarm annunciator can be quite large in display size, depending on the size of the building. It is often located in the building administrator's room, which is often sited on the ground floor or first floor. It makes sense to locate the annunciator at an easily accessible location. Should a fire break out, the control panel will turn off all the other functions leaving the annunciator to only show the location(s) of the fire.
As you can see, having a good annunciator helps save time and has prevented many a fire from spreading. In fact, it is mandatory according to building safety regulations, for any large building over several floors high to have a workable fire alarm annunciator. At the same time, it is also important to have someone monitoring the annunciator on a regular basis too. An unmonitored annunciator is practically useless.