Wet pipe fire sprinkler systems are the most common type of fire sprinkler system in use. In a wet pipe fire sprinkler system, the water is stored directly in the pipes and released the by heat activated sprinkler heads as needed. This type of system has the advantage of being able to activate instantly, with no lag time when the fire sprinkler head(s) open.
Dry pipe fire sprinkler systems are similar to wet pipe, except the water is not stored in the pipes. Instead, the pipes are filled with pressurized air or nitrogen. When the sprinkler heads activate, the air (or gas) is released and a valve opens that allows water to flow out through the open sprinkler heads. While this causes a slight delay in water discharge, it is useful in buildings where water could freeze if kept in the pipes.
Foam systems can be utilized in either wet or dry systems and are utilized for different purposes. Foam systems are most likely used everywhere flammable liquids are found. When the foam is released it creates a smothering blanket over the area that contains the potential spilled liquid, preventing the fire from growing or preventing nauseous vapors from escaping.
A deluge fire sprinkler system is very similar to a dry pipe fire sprinkler system, except all of the fire sprinkler heads are kept open at all times – they are not individually activated by heat. Instead, deluge fire sprinkler systems are operated by a specialized activation or monitoring system which triggers a valve to open and release the water through all the sprinkler heads on the system at the same time. Once the valve opens, it can’t be closed until manually turned off. Deluge fire sprinklers are not found in homes or offices. Instead, they are used in places where rapid fire spread is a concern or where direct cooling of very specific items is of great concern.
Standpipe systems can be either wet or dry and are designed to deliver a set pressure and quantity of water to different levels in a facility. They can be designed for fire department or for employee use and are required in all buildings above 4 stories in height.
Warehouse fires are extremely challenging; they spread quickly and have immense increases in heat release rate over a short period of time. This is especially true when the fire involves commodities such as flammable liquids, paper, and exposed plastics. In-rack fire sprinkler systems are specifically designed for the protection of racked storage areas in warehouses.
A pre-action system is basically a dry system that requires more than one mode of activation. There are three basic types of pre-action system, but the most common is the double interlocking pre-action system. This type of system may or may not contain pressurized air (or nitrogen) and requires both a sprinkler head to activate and either heat or smoke detectors to activate to introduce water into the piping and through the activated sprinkler head to the fire.
Residential fire sprinkler systems are generally wet systems that are designed to give you and your loved ones more time to exit your home before the fire has a chance to get out of hand. Typically fires in the home activate one sprinkler but occasionally may activate as many as 4 sprinkler heads before the fire is contained, or more typically extinguished, before the fire department is even notified of an emergency.
ESFR sprinkler systems employ the use of a Early Suppression Fast Response Sprinklers and are predominately used for the protection of High Piled Storage facilities (or storage warehouses). Storage arrangements may include palletized, solid pile, shelf, bin box, or rack storage of materials. The primary advantage associated with ESFR Sprinkler Systems is a protection scheme that does not require the use of in-rack sprinklers in a rack storage configuration. Using ESFR sprinklers may eliminate the use of in-rack sprinklers and can help avert the discharge of water caused by rupture of a sprinkler or pipe accidentally struck by a piece of material handling equipment or pallet load.
Including Paint-booth Systems, Halon, FM-200, Ansul, Intergen, Fike, and Co2
The word “special” in special hazard systems refers to specific hazards that need unique protection. These types of special hazards vary from server rooms to highly reactive electric equipment. Each one has unique requirements and can not be protected with general fire suppression systems. Special hazard systems have been designed to meet these needs and vary from gas to dry chemical suppression systems.
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