Q & A

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Fire Sprinkler Systems

A: No, fire sprinklers are ready to respond whenever there is a fire or smoke.

A: No, fire sprinklers activate as necessary to concentrate a water spray directly on the fire area.

A: Between one and five sprinklers are generally able to control most fires.

A: There has never been a multiple loss of life due to fire or smoke in a fully sprinklered building.

A: Accidental sprinkler discharge as the result of a manufacturing defect happens very rarely. The annual frequency is approximately once per every 16,000,000 sprinklers.

Alarm Systems

A: Oliver provides customers with the quality and capabilities that only engineer-distributed systems can offer. Oliver is a factory-certified distributor of both Notifier® and Bosch fire alarm and security systems.

A: No, Oliver has their own specially-trained alarm system technicians for all system installations.

A: Typically, any building rising more than 75 feet above street level must be equipped with an alarm system.

A: The presence of both fire and alarm systems enhances your fire protection. Building codes sometimes allow reduced alarm system coverage when a building is protected with fire sprinklers.

A: Your contractor should be certified by the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET), and should have good references from previously completed projects. NICET certification ensures that technicians have the necessary experience and knowledge to install fire alarm systems.

Integrated Systems

A: An integrated system allows a building manager to monitor and control multiple building systems, such as access control, closed-circuit TV video surveillance, and fire alarm, from a single location.

A: With an integrated system, your personnel will be able to monitor and control multiple building systems from a single location, and sometimes even remotely. This facilitates quick and efficient response to emergencies and sometimes allows property managers to reduce the number of required security personnel.

A: With an integrated system, your security personnel will be more efficient in monitoring and controlling building systems. Problems can be pinpointed quickly and emergency personnel dispatched to the correct locations. Quick reaction time can ensure the safety of your tenants and employees.


A: Oliver performs over 4,000 inspections annually. Inspection jobs range from small jobs requiring just a few hours to large jobs requiring weeks to complete. Oliver inspectors are qualified to inspect backflow preventers, fire suppression systems of all types, fire alarm systems, and fire extinguishers. Oliver is experienced with national accounts and large regional customers with many buildings at multiple sites. Call Oliver's inspection department today for an appointment.

A: All fire protection systems should be inspected at least once a year. This includes fire sprinkler systems, alarm systems, fire extinguishers, emergency lighting, kitchen hood systems, clean agent systems, and other special hazard systems.

A: The most common sprinkler system issue is damage from freezing water. For wet systems, owners should maintain interior temperatures at 40 degrees or higher to ensure that the water in the fire sprinkler system pipes does not freeze. Although dry systems are not filled with water, they have low-point drains to collect condensation and must be drained. If these low points are not drained periodically, water can collect and freeze.

Emergency Service

A: Oliver's emergency service technicians are always available, 24 hours-a-day, 7 days-a-week. Oliver technicians are qualified to handle all fire sprinkler and alarm system problems and emergencies. Call 610-277-1331 to dispatch an emergency service technician to your facility.

A: Due to the urgent and unplanned nature of emergency service, Oliver must charge more for this type of service call. Contact the Oliver service department for more information regarding billing rates.

Special Hazards

A: Oliver has been designing, installing, and servicing special hazard fire protection systems since 1957. Our special hazard systems experience includes: rack sprinklers, preaction, foam, early suppression fast response (ESFR), clean agent suppression, carbon dioxide suppression, explosion suppression, VESDA air sampling, dry chemical, kitchen hood, water leak detection, and spark detection.

Fire Extinguishers

A: Fire extinguishers are categorized by the type of fire that they are designed to extinguish. Fires are classified as type A, B, C, D, and K. Often an extinguisher can be approved to combat multiple fire types. Call Oliver for a recommendation on the type of fire extinguisher your situation requires.

A: Fire extinguishers should be checked frequently to ensure that they are both visible and accessible. Always look at the pressure gauge on the extinguisher to make sure that the needle is in the green, or 'charged' location. If an extinguisher is not charged, replace it immediately. Extinguishers should be professionally inspected and tagged at least once a year. If your extinguisher tags are over a year old, call Oliver's inspection department today.