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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

How to Keep Your Sprinkler System From Having Problems

9/21/2020 (Permalink)

Imagine your commercial property soaked from an accidental sprinkler activation. Now picture the damage caused by a malfunction during a fire. Improper sprinkler maintenance may cost you dearly, so take this issue seriously and avoid unnecessary losses.

Causes of Sprinkler Impairments

Fire protection systems fail to operate correctly for four reasons:

1. Corrosion, sometimes generated by an excess buildup of oxygenated water from dry pipes

2. Freezing or overheating, caused by extreme temperatures

3. An unreliable water supply, resulting from improper installation

4. Proximity to other sprinkler heads, triggering the heat-sensitive mechanisms to interfere with one another.

Avoid these scenarios and keep your building in Fort Collins, CO safe by following the below sprinkler maintenance suggestions.

Sprinkler Optimization

Fire sprinklers can become dirty, especially in areas like kitchens where greases and oils are used. Water may not properly deploy if sprinkler heads are grimy. Therefore, have them cleaned with a non-corrosive degreaser. When painting ceilings, take precautions so that paint never covers sprinkler parts. Also, move filing cabinets and other ceiling-height items a minimum of 18 inches away from spray arcs, as obstructions may hamper water from reaching ablaze.

Sprinkler Inspections

Checkups performed by trained technicians can reveal problems you would never detect otherwise, such as deeply hidden rust or improper calibration. Have non-electronic control valves tested weekly, as these must be open to properly distribute water. If your building utilizes electronic valves, have them examined during your annual analysis. Considering knobs can easily be mistakenly turned, check your building’s pressure levels quarterly. Gauges are best tested every five years and occasionally need replacement. Your building’s occupancy and protection design will determine the level of review required. After your technician performs an audit, request documentation that explicitly details all findings. Fire protectors should deploy only when necessary, never when a fire isn’t present. Proper sprinkler maintenance means it's less likely you will ever require services from a water restoration specialist.

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