Douglas Krantz - Technical Writer - Describing How It Works
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Help - I have a City Circuit Trouble on My Panel

I have a question about something


Hello

I work in a senior assisted living home. I have a question about our Simplex 4005 fire panel. It is showing a "City Circuit Trouble 1". It started after hours and on the weekend.

I was wondering if you could explain to me why it is present or what may be causing this trouble. I know I can't just acknowledge, silence, and reset this trouble as it indicates some problem. But the call center says that they are receiving all communications and not to worry.

The other problem is that the audible tone for the staff and residents it is driving them crazy at this point.

Do you have any advice or help that you could offer?

Signed M H

Older fire alarm control panels (the Simplex 4005 control panel counts as an older panel) sometimes had a "City Circuit" output. The City Circuit was used as a direct means of calling the fire department over dedicated telephone lines. Nowadays, this type of communication is not used, but the card is still there.

To find out more about your City Circuit card, Google the words "Simplex 4005 city circuit", and close to the top will be information about the City Circuit card, and the Simplex 4005.

On the circuit card itself, check the disconnect switches, one of them might be in the wrong position.

Also, there may be something wrong with the card, or another switch somewhere else is set wrong, or a plug has come loose in the panel, but basically, the card might not be working right. To fix the problem, you may have to get the fire alarm system serviced.

When the system is being serviced, if the card isn't being used at all, you might even want to have the card removed. (Don't remove the card yourself because then you can't get rid of the trouble on the panel.)

Annoying Tone

The other thing you mention is the tone that's driving everyone crazy. To communicate alarms and troubles to the monitoring company, it sounds like you have an external box doing the dialing. If so, that box might be making the annoying tone. This is a red box fairly close by, or at least in earshot of the fire alarm panel.

Take my word for it, no one can tell where this tone is coming from. To confirm that you've found it, find the red box and put your ear next to it. Once you've found the box, on the right hand side of it, there may be a small button. Press the button for about 3 seconds and the box will go silent.

That annoying tone is a trouble reminder sound, though. Just to remind you that there's a trouble on the system, every 24 hours this box will turn on the tone again. To silence the red communicator box permanently, you will have to fix the trouble with the Simplex 4005.

Call Center

Keep in mind also, the call center doesn't receive a continuous trouble signal. They only receive a one-time signal that says there's trouble. Until all troubles are fixed, they won't receive any other trouble signal.

They are receiving their daily test of the phone lines, so they can tell you that part of the fire alarm system is working. However, beyond receiving the one-time turning on or off of the alarm, supervisory, and trouble signals, they can't tell if there's anything wrong with your system. That probably explains why they don't think there's a problem.

Douglas Krantz
Based on his electronics training, and his understanding of Life Safety, Douglas Krantz has compiled his knowledge of Conventional Fire Alarm Systems into the book Make It Work - Conventional Fire Alarms. The book covers the basics of the Conventional Fire Alarm System, and shows how Life Safety and internal supervision affects the fire alarm system.

Douglas Krantz -- Fire Alarm Engineering Technician, Electronic Designer, Electronic Technician, Writer

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Post this by your fire alarm panel -- It shows the in-house fire alarm system and how it calls the fire department.

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