Someone please pass the Tequila, Margaritas, Nachos and the senoritas in a Canteen? We are not talking Nachos, we are dealing with a very home sick Mexican on a short wave radio in the same apartment building a Firelite fire panel is installed. This call came in two days ago, generated by my infomercial article on noise on fire alarms. The opening line of course, we had no clue exactly what was going on. All this tech knew was, Mexican music was coming out of his fire alarm panel through his SLC loop line.
There are 18 buildings involved, and all 18 buildings did not comply with NEC code Article 250.94, so obviously they where having grounding differentials. So, one of the side-affects of this passage of current is passing Mexican music to all 18 buildings. To mitigate this grounding differential, the security companies salesman sold the apartment management the wireless connection between panels concept. After unhooking all the SLC loop lines from the systems, they discovered that only one building and it happened to be one of them in the middle of the campus was making this extremely loud Mexican music on that particular panel. So that is how I got the call.
The tech told me he read some of my stories on Linked in and also he told me the story leading up to this point. Then asked my opinion as to what I think it might be. Like the other stories, the tech did everything including install surge suppression (the kind you get at ADI), replace the panel, and so on. So by the time he got to me, I really didn’t have much to go on..accept he did most of the work already.
Obviously the ADI special surge suppression are not equip to handle noise so don’t try it guys, your just wasting your time and money on that cheap stuff. It was a big waste of time. Mine just might have a profound affect, however in my trouble shooting scheme of things there were a few things the tech has yet to try. One thing we do know, there is no radio tower near by. Nothing commercially that could generate a transmitted RF signal and the low pf capacitance fire alarm oscillator could act as a receiver.
However, we are on the right track. Since it is Mexican music, I believe their might be an apartment with a shortwave radio that is both a transmitter and a receiver. The SLC loop wire cannot be that far from it. One of the things I did ask him, did you happen to install a 3/4″ arsenic plywood (the green or yellow one). Of course he tells me, and I tell him, never do that again, and this is why. The chemicals inside that 3/4″ plywood is highly conductive, and frankly that is no better then attaching your fire alarm panel to metal studs. So chances are you have an physical ground loop with our AC power ground. He acknowledged that he did not know that treated lumber is highly conductive. So before doing anything, I did suggest replace the plywood with real 3/4″ untreated plywood and that might make a difference. Next try and locate the home sick Mexican that lives in the building. Have him turn that thing off and never turn it on again.
This is another example of….first trouble shoot the problem, make a suggestion as to how to fix the problem, and If you have what he needs, maybe you can sell it too him. However it isn’t time yet to do that. He still had more work to do. Frankly if he buys something from me or not, if he can find that home sick Mexican, I think he resolved his noise issue.
If this strikes a cord, and the Mexican does not turn of the radio transmitter receiver call INS and they will take care of it for you. If you have any questions, or need any help, you can call me and we can discuss it. It would be nice to sell you something, but in this case, maybe not. I hope I have helped you solve this problem, if not today, tomorrow. 727-823-6100 x 1
For those of you that don’t mind it or maybe you do, yes this is another blatant Infomercial and the important part of it….did you learn anything from it?