Testing emergency lights is required by state and federal building regulations. The emergency light testing procedures are regulated by OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Emergency light testing isn't difficult as it may sound - all emergency lights come with a push-button that allows you to test the unit.
The purpose of emergency lights is to provide illumination along the exit pathway of a building during emergencies where electrical power is lost. So, the term "testing", in regards to emergency lights, refers to shutting off AC electrical power and switching the emergency light to battery power.
When you press in the test button on an emergency light, a relay is flipped and the light begins to operate on battery power. Testing your emergency lights is important not only because it is required, but mostly because it insures the readiness of the fixtures to be an effective and possibly life-saving aid to building occupants during emergencies.
OSHA emergency light testing regulations require that each emergency light throughout a building be tested once a month for at least 90 seconds. Additionally, once a year, each emergency light must be tested for 90 minutes. 90 minutes is the amount of time that emergency lights are designed to operate in case of a power outage of any kind.
If you test your emergency lights and they cannot sustain a 90-minute operating period, you will need to purchase replacement emergency light batteries. Replacement emergency light batteries are affordable and we offer a wide selection. By far, most popular type across the industry is the 6-volt 4.5-amp sealed lead acid emergency light battery. We always have that battery in stock and at an affordable price.
You might also want to consider installing a new emergency light fixture, especially if your emergency lights are more than 5 years old. Our most popular emergency light, the basic thermoplastic model, begins at less than $20, so it's an affordable choice as a replacement.
One other thing to consider if you decide to purchase new emergency lights, is choosing a model that can come with the self-diagnostic testing option. Self-testing emergency lights feature a diagnostic system that constantly monitors the battery, charger, circuit board, and transformer. The functional status of these components is displayed through a series of LED lights on the side of the unit. The advantage of self-testing emergency lights is that they eliminate the nuisance of testing and insure reliability.
We are here to help answer any questions that you might have about emergency light testing so please do not hesitate to contact us today to ask a question about regulations or emergency lighting fixtures themselves.