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What is UL 864?

UL 864 has been the “Standard for Control Units and Accessories for Fire Alarm Systems” since 1948. Over the years, new editions have made slight changes to the standard. However, the most recent Ninth Edition made approximately 300 revisions to the standard and added 100 new pages of requirements to UL 864.

To understand more about this publication from the Underwriters Laboratories Inc., you need to know its history, the changes executed in the Ninth Edition, and how all this information is useful for business owners.

History of UL 864

UL 864 Ninth Edition was published September 30, 2003 and went into effect Dec 31, 2008. The standard is accepted worldwide by the fire protection industry, with the exception of Europe. Other standards exist within individual countries, but UL 864 is the most significant and widely used.

The essential purpose of UL 864 is to follow changes in National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 72. Unique chapters within NFPA 72 cover a variety of fire safety aspects. The chapters are reviewed and updated regularly by industry experts representing manufacturers and installers of sprinkler systems, smoke detectors, and fire alarms.

Changes in the Ninth Edition of UL 864

When considered individually, none of the changes to UL 864 Ninth Edition are significant, but their cumulative effect has forced manufacturers of fire safety products to redesign entire product lines to comply.

All the changes can be categorized into these classes:

  • Performance adheres to the latest revisions of NFPA 72
  • Performance utilizes new technology
  • The standard is consistent with UL’s product testing practices
  • Performance is in agreement with other UL fire safety standards
  • The expanded scope covers more categories, such as sprinklers, water spray systems, foam water systems, dry and wet chemical extinguishing, and smoke control and management

Some specific, notable changes to UL 864 Ninth Edition include:

  • System alarm response time is reduced from 90 seconds to 10 seconds
  • Visible and audible notification is now in greater synchronization
  • Monitoring for integrity requirements is expanded
  • Interconnected devices have new compatibility requirements
  • Software integrity assessment has increased requirements
  • Off-premise signaling has greater requirements
  • Products must have a special rating for installation beyond dry indoor environments

Why this is Useful for Business Owners

UL 864 Ninth Edition brings a number of updates to fire alarm equipment. By choosing and installing products listed in accordance with the updated requirements, you can rest assured that your business or organization meets or exceeds the latest industry safety standards in fire protection—keeping both your employees and property safe. This puts your mind at ease, as well as the minds of your customers.

To learn specific ways you can help protect your Houston, Texas area business against fire hazards and emergencies, please contact Kauffman Co. today.

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