Fire Sprinkler systems are meant to give occupants time to evacuate and give firefighters a chance of survival. Sprinklers are a first line of defense for residential, commercial, and industrial properties, yet there are still some questions about how they work.
How does a fire sprinkler work?
A typical fire sprinkler is attached to plumbing system so there is always water at the ready in case of an emergency. A fire sprinkler is typically composed of three parts, the cap/seal, the glass bulb, and the deflector. When the heat at the ceiling level reaches 150 degrees, the liquid in the glass bulb will burst. When the bulb bursts the cap/seal is released and the water flows freely from the sprinkler and over the deflector, which spreads the water so it will cover a larger area.
How is a fire sprinkler triggered?
Fire Sprinklers can only be triggered by the heat of a fire once it reaches 150 degrees, or the force of an object striking the sprinkler. If you have a fire sprinkler in a residential kitchen, the heat from burning dinner is not enough to trigger it. Smoke will not trigger a fire sprinkler.
If one sprinkler is set off, do the rest of them go off as well?
No. A sprinkler can only be set off by heat (fire) or force (object striking the sprinkler). Each sprinkler can only be triggered individually.
Are fire sprinklers effective?
Yes. Fires start small and the earlier you can detect them the more opportunity there is to minimize damage. Fire sprinkler systems are also automated so they will work in the event of a fire even when no one is around. Plus, the water needed and the damage caused by a sprinkler is minimal when compared to that of a fire that the fire department extinguishes.
Are fire sprinklers something that I can install myself?
Absolutely not. Only qualified and experience technicians should install fire sprinklers. Aside from the possibility of an improper DIY installation, there are also many rules and regulations that you have to be aware of.
How do I know if my fire sprinklers work?
Local and state laws require that a fire sprinkler system be checked four times a year to ensure they work properly in the event of a fire.
Will a fire sprinkler accidentally go off?
Not on its own. If the sprinkler is hit with enough force it may activate.
Are there organizations for fire sprinklers?
Yes, Dave Jones, Inc. is involved with organizations like American Fire Sprinkler Association (AFSA), and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) to stay on top of the latest technology and trends.