Honeywell CLSS and Fire Alarm Control Panel (FACP) Compatibility

By Andrew Erickson

July 1, 2023

At a time when we're seeing more and more IoT (Internet of Things) solutions, Honeywell's Connected Life Safety Services (CLSS) is a major new development.

It's an innovative platform that uses advanced connectivity, data analytics, and user-friendly interfaces. CLSS users are experiencing a transformation in the way fire safety services are delivered and managed.

What is Honeywell CLSS?

Honeywell's CLSS is a cloud-based platform for fire safety and other life safety services. It is designed to provide you with a single, centralized platform for monitoring and managing life safety systems.

The system includes, among other functions:

  • Real-Time Monitoring: Honeywell's CLSS monitors the status of fire alarm systems in real time. It sends automatic alerts about system malfunctions, maintenance needs, or potential hazards, significantly improving the response times and minimizing risks.
  • Enhanced Maintenance: CLSS allows for predictive maintenance, identifying issues before they cause system failure. This capability prevents costly downtime, improves safety, and prolongs the life of the system.
  • Data Analytics: The CLSS platform offers comprehensive data analytics that provide insights into system performance, trends, and potential issues. This data can be used to optimize system performance, make informed decisions, and improve overall safety.
  • Compliance Reporting: The platform automatically generates compliance reports, simplifying the often complicated and time-consuming process of safety compliance.

The Relationship Between CLSS and Fire Alarm Monitoring Systems

Honeywell's CLSS forms the backbone of a modern, sophisticated fire alarm monitoring system. By integrating the fire alarm system with the CLSS platform, facility managers gain an unprecedented level of visibility and control over their fire safety measures.

The CLSS platform centralizes the management and monitoring of fire alarm systems, allowing managers to remotely monitor the system's status, receive immediate alerts of any issues, and quickly take corrective actions. It provides a complete, end-to-end solution for fire safety, from detection and alerting to analytics and compliance.

Moreover, CLSS integrates with other Honeywell safety systems, providing a unified, comprehensive safety solution. This integrated approach ensures consistent, reliable safety across the entire building or facility.

What legacy technologies are still in use today for fire alarming?

Many buildings are still relying on legacy fire alarming systems that were installed decades ago. These systems may still work just fine, but they often lack the features and capabilities of modern systems.

This includes:

  • Telegraph: A telegraph is a manual signaling system that was used to transmit messages over long distances. It relies on a series of connected devices that make electrical connections when activated, sending an electric current along the line to indicate a message.
  • Dialers: Dialers are simple telecommunication devices that use the telephone network to send out a machine-readable signal. Dialers were commonly used in fire alarm systems for a number of years.
  • Radio: Radio is an analog technology that was traditionally used to transmit messages between radio receivers and transmitters. While still in widespread use, its range is limited and it's being replaced by more modern technologies.
  • Pagers: Pagers were once the preferred means of messaging for many fire alarm systems, but they have been largely replaced in recent years due to their limited range and lack of features.
  • Proprietary protocols: Many fire alarm systems still use proprietary protocols to transmit messages. If a protocol is not exceedingly popular, support for it is less likely to exist on any particular platform.

What is the problem with newer fire alarm platforms?

Whenever a new fire alarm technology comes along, it's an exciting time. We get new tools that we can use to be more confident in our jobs, react faster, and better protect life safety.

At the same time, there is always need for compatibility with existing systems that can be challenging in the early stages of a new technology. Every technology and development team has to start somewhere with this. Some technologies (ex. standard, commonly used protocols) make broad compatibility much easier.

For CLSS, the promotional material I found indicates the following:

Compatibility: Supports compatible Honeywell fire alarm control panels (FACPs) NOTIFIER INSPIRE™, ONYX, and FireWarden panels; or panel networks with the CLSS Gateway

This is a logical first set of support fire panels (and the "CLSS Gateway" that could include many third-party and legacy options under that one label).

Obviously, a line has to be drawn somewhere. Some technologies (commonly things like legacy dialers, telegraph, proprietary protocols...) are simply too old to be natively supported by a new head-end system.

This creates some headaches for you, as you either have to:

  1. Replace all of your legacy gear all at once - AFTER you've already had to budget to buy a new head-end system, or...
  2. Manage two or more disjointed monitoring systems - which is annoying at best and may put the public in danger and fail to comply with relevant fire codes.

How will Digitize improve your systemwide compatibility?

Digitize System 3505 Prism LX and related Digitize products are designed specifically to address the compatibility issues of integrating legacy alarm systems with a new head-end system.

The Prism LX is a head end that can also act as bridge device. It will take in signals from a legacy fire alarm system, including analog devices and digital communicators, and converts them to newer systems. This allows for a seamless transition from a legacy system to a newer system, without having to replace the existing fire alarms or install two separate monitoring systems.

The Honeywell CLSS protocol is one example of a "newer system" that might require conversion.

If you need support to bridging legacy protocols/signals into your CLSS system, just give us a call to discuss your options. We'll either have an off-the-shelf option or can propose a custom development project (usually 1-2 months of development time).

Call Digitize to kickstart your project today

At Digitize, we understand the importance of a reliable fire safety system. That's why we're committed to helping you upgrade your existing systems to the latest and most advanced technologies available.

Whether you need support bridging certain legacy alarms into your Honeywell CLSS or are considering a complete overhaul of your fire safety system, our team can help you develop a customized solution that meets your needs.

Call a Digitize engineer today to get started on your project.

Call 1-800-523-7232 or email

Andrew Erickson

Andrew Erickson

Andrew Erickson is an Application Engineer at DPS Telecom, a manufacturer of semi-custom remote alarm monitoring systems based in Fresno, California. Andrew brings more than 17 years of experience building site monitoring solutions, developing intuitive user interfaces and documentation, and...Read More