Any way to easily remove sharpie from inside a panel?

We are switching our monitor service for my building’s fire panel, and we have done this once before. Each time, they wrote in Sharpie all over the inside panel. I know this is common, I see it often, but I like everything to be clean and neat. Like, with a label maker or at least a laminated sheet of paper in the panel.

To give you an idea of what I’m working with, my building has a Fire-Lite MS-9050UD. I’m thinking go ham on it with a Clorox wipe… Thoughts?

Vinyl erasers work amazing to remove Sharpie on metal. I use these all the time to remove markings from devices before reselling them - you can’t even tell anything was written there.

You have to apply significant pressure so that the eraser begins to get hot from the friction before the ink begins to come up.

Seconded! I’ve used those a few times, they work fantastic.

Is the writing on the inside of the panel? If they had things like an installer passcode written on the panel, you will definitely want to write that down before cleaning it off.

HAND SANITIZER. that will work for sure, or you can go iver it with an EXPO marker and erase it. THese are both super quick and easy

Yes, the writing is on the inside, but like I said we are setting up a new monitoring account, and switching our servicing company to the company I now work for. Believe it or not, it has taken us this long to get off of the old phone lines. It is way overpriced, and not even that reliable. Monitoring/renting the radio is MUCH cheaper.

In doing this we are getting a new account. The old information was set up in 2008 before I had a say in our fire alarm system. Now I get to make some higher up decisions about it, and thank God I know what I’m doing for most of the stuff.

I didn’t even know that writing on panels was a thing because I would have thought it would have been against some code to write DIRECTLY on it.

That only applies to devices. But yet many do it anyways since labels fall off and Sharpie doesn’t, at least not for a long time.

Goo Gone. Or rubbing alcohol is supposedly ideal for removing sharpie. After a while, though, it’s pretty tough regardless of what method you use.

Oh OK. Yeah that makes a lot of sense. I can see that. Guess I was confusing the panel with alarms. Anyway I hope he can get the Sharpie off the panel!

My panel came with writing in sharpie too. I just used a bit of goo gone and some elbow grease and it came off perfectly.

Normally the service company will write things like the monitoring phone number, account number, and/or panel passcodes on the inside of the panels so authorized personnel can work with the system in an emergency.

As for that being against some sort of code, it’s possible. That said, a lot of pull stations have spaces in the labels designated for writing device addresses. For example, the BG-12LX has a label underneath the module and switch inside the station that has a small corner where there is the following: L_ _ - M_ _ _ where L indicates loop # and M indicates module #, and the blanks are where you write the information in for quick reference. Not sure how you’d get a label over that unless you just covered the entire thing.

It’s probably fine if it’s not on the outside of the device, but if it is the codes seem to not like it. I’m not really sure why they would care anyways, it’s not like it’s damaging the device or anything like that, and a label is going to be just as noticeable as Sharpie.

I was taking about me thinking it was against code to write on the OUTSIDE of the panel. Nothing about the inside.

Actually you’re almost certainly right about that. Doesn’t mean it’s not done all the time tho. My first panel, an MS-4, had some scribbling on the outside panel door.

For what it’s worth, I see lots of devices in the field when they are labeled EOL now (which before I started working in the field I never saw). I wonder if that is allowed. It’s very helpful!

If EOL means “end of life”, then there should NOT be a panel that is installed as a replacement that is labeled EOL. That is highly irresponsible and I shudder to think what would happen if it failed in a real emergency.

EOL means “End Of Line”, it’s to signify the device is the last on the circuit.