Sprinkler systems, when maintained properly, are very effective at putting out fires and preventing damage to property, serious injuries and even death that can result from fires. There have been no fires in which more than two people were killed in a building whose fire sprinkler system was working correctly, this is according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). When these systems are combined with a good early warning system, injuries, damages and death from fire can be cut by at least 50%. Fire sprinkler systems, while being very effective, also use less water than traditional fire hose. Sprinkler systems typically release between eight and 24 gallons of water each minute that they are used. A fire hose will release between 80 and 124 gallons per minute. The key to getting all of the benefits of these fire protection systems is proper maintenance and fire sprinkler inspections.
6 Tips for Better Fire Sprinkler Safety:
- Start with a good system. When you get a fire sprinkler system, make sure it is a good system and that it has been installed properly. Ask people you know when you start looking for a fire sprinkler installation company to get recommendations. Ask the company for references. Your friends and family can good resources for finding great consultants. Ask about their track record and how long they have been in business in your area. You can check online and see if they have testimonials on their website. Find out what the rules and regulations are in your area for fire sprinkler systems. Some areas require the people who conduct fire sprinkler inspections or repairs need certification or be licensed. Call your fire department if you are not sure.
- Make sure that none of the fire sprinkler system components are blocked or clogged. This is one thing that absolutely needs to be checked during your scheduled fire sprinkler inspections. Clogs and any kinds of blockages are some of the main people find with their fire sprinkler systems. This can happen if you paint a room or just move your furniture. Check this after you do either of those things.
- Do periodic checks of your flow rate. Most systems are installed with a valve for testing your water flow that should empty to the outside of your home. Release the valve slowly top open it and let it run for at least one minute. You should make sure you let your alarm company know when you plan to conduct this kind of test because doing it will set off the alarm and you do not want them to call the local fire department during your flow test. If you have a sprinkler system, it is important that be hooked up to your fire alarm system.
- Check your insulation. While most fire sprinkler systems that are put in homes where freezing is a possibility, the lines are insulated. If you are concerned about this, you should, from time to time, check the lines to make sure the insulation is intact and can be counted on to prevent any problems.
- Check you water shutoff valves on a regular basis. Make sure all of your valves are open and your water storage tanks are full. At the very least, doing this should give you peace of mind.
- Have a professional come to inspect your system. If you want to make every thing is really working properly, can bring a professional in to conduct fire sprinkler inspections for you. Your local fire department can give you a list of contractors who can do this.
Protecting your family from fire is a top priority for most homeowners. Having a properly maintained and functioning fire sprinkler system is a great start in that direction. Combining it with an alarm system can help you make sure your family is as safe as possible from fires. It can also be a way to save money on your home insurance policy as many companies offer discounts for homeowners who have these systems in place. Contact your insurance carrier if you have any questions about what you need to do to qualify for them.