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Automatic Fire Sprinkler

1   Anti Freeze Loops Fire Sprinkler System

Kelly Davis

Automatic Fire Sprinkler Installation, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Inspection, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Repair, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Service, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Sales, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Engineering

Anti-Freeze Loop Fire Sprinkler System

We Do Our Inspection and Service in Accordance with NFPA 13, 13D, 13R &25

Never Compromise with Fire Protection – Use the Best Company and Product

Current Requirements for Sprinkler Systems Containing Antifreeze

A Summary NOTE: This summary is current as of January 2014 and replaces the previous antifreeze alerts dated July 2010, August 2010, and April 5, 2011.

Background Following reports of a fire incident involving a sprinkler system that contained a high concentration antifreeze solution, research and standards development activities were begun to address concerns raised by the combustibility of antifreeze solutions in residential sprinkler systems. NFPA published several Safety Alerts providing guidance from NFPA in its role as a safety advocate. In addition, NFPA standards development activities were begun to consider and addressed the issues, and these activities resulted, as more information and research became available, in successive Tentative Interim Amendments (TIAs) to NFPA sprinkler standards. What follows is a brief summary of the current antifreeze requirements in NFPA sprinkler standards. This summary is not intended to provide all of the details or all of the provisions; the current applicable NFPA sprinkler standards should be directly consulted for a complete and accurate understanding of the requirements related to the use of antifreeze.

Anti_Freeze_Loops_Fire_Sprinkler_System

The Current Requirements for Sprinkler Systems Containing Antifreeze – A Summary

The current provisions in NFPA standards relating to the use of antifreeze in sprinkler systems concerning is contained in the following standards:

  • NFPA 13, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems (2013 edition),
  • NFPA 13R, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems in Low-Rise Residential Occupancies (2013 edition)
  • NFPA 13D, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems in One- and Two-family Dwellings and Manufactured Homes (2013 edition),
  • NFPA 25, Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems (2014 edition).

 

New Sprinkler Systems (i.e., installed after September 30, 2012) Containing Antifreeze – NFPA 13, NFPA 13D, and NFPA 13R Sprinkler Systems

With limited exceptions, all new antifreeze systems (systems installed after September 30, 2012) are required to use listed antifreeze solutions. The listing of the antifreeze solution must indicate that the solution will not ignite when discharged from a sprinkler. The exceptions to the requirement for listed antifreeze solutions are as follows:

  • Factory-premixed antifreeze solutions of propylene glycol in excess of 40% by volume are permitted in ESFR (Early Suppression Fast Response) systems where the sprinklers are listed for such use in a specific application. The listing will indicate the maximum percentage of propylene glycol that can be used with the specific sprinkler.
  • Limited use of factory-premixed antifreeze solutions of propylene glycol up to 38% and glycerin up to 48% are permitted in “specific areas” of new NFPA 13D installations where approved by the authority having jurisdiction (AHJ).
  • The designer must provide documentation to the AHJ substantiating the use of traditional antifreeze solutions.
  • New systems, once installed, must be annually tested in the manner required for existing systems, summarized below. Existing Sprinkler Systems (i.e., installed before September 30, 2012) Containing Antifreeze Existing NFPA 13D Sprinkler Systems
  • Existing NFPA13D systems (systems installed before September 30, 2012) must be tested annually by a qualified individual.

NFPA 13D provides two alternative test procedures. In the first alternative, the system is drained and two solution samples are taken, one near the beginning and one near the end of the draining process. In the second alternative, the system is not drained and two solution samples are taken: one at the highest practical elevation, and one at the lowest practical elevation of the system.

  • The two samples collected using either alternative procedure is then tested to verify that the specific gravity of both samples is similar. If the specific gravity of both samples is similar and if the system is found to contain factory-premixed antifreeze solutions of either glycerin at a maximum concentration of 50% by volume or propylene glycol at a maximum concentration of 40% by volume, then the existing solution is allowed to remain in service. If these conditions are not met, the existing solution must be replaced with a premixed antifreeze solution of either glycerin at a maximum concentration of 50% by volume or propylene glycol at a maximum concentration of 40% by volume (or other solutions listed specifically for use in fire protection systems).
  • The concentration of antifreeze solutions shall be limited to the minimum necessary for the anticipated minimum temperature.
  • Following the annual test, a tag must be attached to the riser indicating the date of the last test, the type and concentration of antifreeze solution, the date the antifreeze was replaced (if applicable), the name and licence number of the contractor that tested and/or replaced the antifreeze solution, a statement indicating if the entire system was drained and replaced with antifreeze, and a notice to test the concentration of the solution at yearly intervals per NFPA 13D. The testing and maintenance provisions for NFPA 13 and 13R antifreeze systems are governed by NFPA 25. NFPA 25 provides that, by September 2022, existing systems (systems installed after September 30, 2012), like new systems, will be required to use only listed antifreeze solutions. Until then, traditional antifreeze solutions may continue to be used where certain conditions, confirmed by annual testing, have been met summarized as follows. Until a listed non-combustible solution is introduced into the system, antifreeze solutions in existing systems must be tested annually, prior to the onset of freezing weather.
  • If it is determined, based on records, tests, or other reliable information, that the solution found in the system is no longer permitted or if the type of antifreeze cannot be reliably determined, the system must be drained and replaced with an acceptable factory-premixed solution.
  • If the initial review indicates that the solution type is acceptable, test samples must be taken at the top and bottom of each system (in some cases an additional sample must be taken).
  • If all the test samples indicate a concentration of glycerin not greater than 38% by volume or propylene glycol not greater than 30% by volume, then the solution is permitted and may remain in the system.
  • Where the test samples indicate that the solution is between 38% and 50% glycerin or 30% and 40% propylene glycol, the solution may remain in the system pending the approval of a deterministic risk assessment [see NFPA 25: 5.3.4.2.1(3)].
  • If any of the samples indicate a concentration in excess of 50% glycerin or 40% propylene glycol, the system must be emptied and refilled with an acceptable solution or an alternate method of freeze protection must be employed. An acceptable solution would be a solution that contains less than 38% glycerin or 30% propylene glycol, or a solution that has been approved by the AHJ based on a deterministic risk assessment.
  • All traditional antifreeze solutions must be replaced by listed antifreeze solutions, or alternative freeze protection methods, by September 2022. NOTE: At this time, listed antifreeze solutions do not yet appear to be available. Until listed antifreeze solutions become available, many systems will not be able to use antifreeze and, as discussed in the sidebar, must look to other freeze protection design approaches. NFPA further recommends, since no listed solutions currently exist, other freeze protection design approaches must be employed for new systems. For existing systems where traditional antifreeze solutions remain an option, consideration should still be given to alternatives to the use of antifreeze. It is important to remember that, while NFPA sprinkler standards allow the limited use of antifreeze in existing systems as an option to address freeze potential, they do not require the use of antifreeze in sprinkler systems. Both in designing new NFPA 13D systems and evaluating existing systems, owners and contractors are encouraged to investigate other methods of maintaining wet pipe systems in environments where freezing of pipes may be a concern. Several alternative design options exist, including the use of insulation, heating areas where sprinkler piping is run, or the use of dry pipe and preaction systems in areas subject to freezing.

Where traditional antifreeze solutions are used, only the minimum necessary concentration should be considered. Where antifreeze is used in sprinkler systems, the concentration of antifreeze solution used in the system should be limited to the minimum concentration necessary for the lowest anticipated temperatures. Of course, in no event should the minimum concentration ever exceed the concentrations permitted by the applicable NFPA sprinkler standard.

If testing for antifreeze has not been conducted per the requirements of the NFPA sprinkler standards, testing should be initiated as soon as possible and be conducted by a qualified individual. NFPA recommends that homeowners with residential sprinkler systems contact a local sprinkler contractor for assistance. For more information on antifreeze in sprinkler systems, including historical information, research, and reports, please go to www.nfpa.org/antifreeze. Note that the NFPA standards described in this summary are, like all NFPA standards, revised and amended from time to time.

To be sure you have the most up-to-date versions of NFPA sprinkler standards, and to view the full text of those standards, go to www.nfpa.org/document for a list of NFPA standards and click on the appropriate standard (i.e., NFPA 13, 13D 13R 25). These document info pages also offer the option to sign up for an Alert feature to receive email notifications when new updates and other information are posted regarding the standard.

Important Notice: This summary is not a formal interpretation issued pursuant to NFPA regulations.

This summary has been prepared by NFPA. And, the understanding and interpretation of NFPA standards expressed herein reflects the personal opinion of NFPA staff and does not necessarily represent the official position of the NFPA or its technical committees. In addition, this document is neither intended, nor should it be relied upon, to provide professional consultation or services.

Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections or Repairs to Your Automatic Fire Sprinkler System at 1-877-243-9664.

Automatic Sprinkler System Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

2   Dry Automatic Fire Sprinkler Systems

Automatic Fire Sprinkler, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Installation, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Inspection, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Repair, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Service, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Sales, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Engineering

Dry Automatic Fire Sprinkler Systems

We Do Our Inspection and Service in Accordance with NFPA 13 & 25 and Fire Code

Never Compromise with Fire Protection – Use the Best Company and Product

Dry Sprinkler System

A dry sprinkler system is intended to be used In areas where low temperatures could cause a wet pipe system to freeze. Dry pipe systems are pressurized with air in the ambient condition and experience an inherent delay in the discharge of water to allow the pressurized air in the system to escape. When a sprinkler actuates, air is released through the sprinkler, allowing water to flow into the piping system through the dry pipe valve. NFPA 13 mandates that the time for the water to reach the most remote sprinkler be no longer than 60 seconds. This time delay allows the fire to grow larger than it would with a wet pipe system of similar design, and the larger fire size results in more sprinklers in the fire area actuating.

Dry_Automatic_Fire_Sprinkler_Systems
Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections or Repairs to Your Automatic Fire Sprinkler System at 1-877-243-9664.

Automatic Sprinkler System Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

3   Fire Hose

Fire Hose Installation, Fire Hose Inspection, Fire Hose Repair, Fire Hose Service, Fire Hose Sales, Fire Hose Hydro Test

Fire Hose

We Do Our Inspection and Service in Accordance with NFPA 1962 & 25

Never Compromise with Fire Protection – Use the Best Company and Product

Fire Hose

What is NFPA 1962?

This standard provides requirements for fire hose, couplings, nozzles, and appliances in order to ensure a reasonable level of reliability when they are used at an incident.

Fire_Hose

What does NFPA 1962 address?

Provisions cover the care, use, inspection, service testing, and replacement of fire hose, fire hose couplings, fire-fighting nozzles, and fire hose appliances, and the associated record keeping. Specific criteria are provided for attack hose, supply hose, and forestry hose; occupant-use hose; booster hose; and suction hose.

Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections Testing or Repairs to Your Fire Sprinkler Hoses at 1 (877)–243-9664

Fire Hose and Standpipe System Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

4   Fire Pump

Automatic Fire Pumps, Automatic Fire Pump Installation, Automatic Fire Pump Inspection, Automatic Fire Pump Repair, Automatic Fire Pump Service, Automatic Fire Pump Sales

Fire Pumps

We Do Our Inspection and Service in Accordance with NFPA 20 & 25 and Fire Code

Never Compromise with Fire Protection – Use the Best Company and Product

Fire Pumps

Fire pumps are typically listed by an approval institute and can be driven either by an electric motor or a diesel engine. In a fire installation, there can be one or more fire pumps put into operation as a duty assist (50%) and standby pumps.

The fire pump delivers the water via the pipe system to the fire sprinklers to suppress the fire. Fire pumps are powered either by an electric motor or a diesel engine, or sometimes by a steam turbine. The number of fire pumps installed depends on the occupancy hazard (LH, OH or HH) and specific fire installation standard. Some known can be seen in the table to the right.

Where twin electric fire pumps are installed, there is a requirement for a secondary power source. This can be from a separate feed to the nearest electricity sub-station, or from a generator located on site. A mains changeover facility should be incorporated into the design to allow for switching to this alternate power source in the event of a mains supply failure.

The fire pump starts when the pressure in the fire sprinkler system drops below a certain set point. If one or more fire sprinklers are exposed to heat above their design temperature, and if the sprinkles open, the sprinkler system pressure drops, the pressure switches, gives a signal, and the duty pump starts. If the duty pump, for any reason, does not start, the standby pump will start, usually from a secondary pressure switch.

Types of pumps used for fire service include end suction, horizontal split case, vertical split case, vertical inline, and vertical turbines.

Most fire pumps are listed for fire pump application, which means they are tested and certified by accredited laboratories and listed by authorized institutions.

Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections or Repairs to Your Automatic Fire Sprinkler Pump at 1-877-243-9664.

Automatic Fire Pump Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

5   Pre-Action Deluge System

Pre-Action and Deluge Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Installation, Pre-Action and Deluge Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Inspection, Pre-Action and Deluge Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Repair, Pre-Action and Deluge Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Service, Pre-Action and Deluge Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Sales

Pre-Action and Deluge Fire Sprinkler

We Do Our Inspection and Service in Accordance with NFPA 13 & 25 and Local AJ

Pre-action and deluge systems require fire detectors (smoke, heat, etc.) to actuate.

A deluge system uses open sprinklers or nozzles to allow flow water to be discharged when the deluge valve actuates. Deluge systems can be used for occupancies where the hazard is considered severe, such as with flammable liquid hazards where the fire could spread over a large floor area.

Pre-action systems have closed heads and pipes filled with pressurized air that supervise a piping system, and can be considered for the protection of valuable assets or irreplaceable property. The detection system for a pre-action system can be designed to prevent water discharge in cases of a false alarm from the detection system, or in case of a sprinkler whose element has encountered mechanical damage.

The detection system on a pre-action system can be designed with a pre-action logic capable of meeting one of the following objectives:

  • Actuation of a fire detector trips a deluge valve to admit water into the sprinkler piping to await the actuation of a sprinkler.
  • Actuation of a fire detector or actuation of a heat-responsive element on a sprinkler trips a deluge valve to allow water into the sprinkler piping.
  • Actuation of a fire detector and actuation of a heat-responsive element on a sprinkler trips a deluge valve to allow water into the sprinkler piping.
Pre_Action_Deluge_System
Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections or Repairs to Your Automatic Fire Sprinkler Pump at 1-877-243-9664.

Pre-Action and Deluge Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

6   Private Fire Hydrant

Fire Hydrant Inspection, Fire Hydrant Testing

Fire Hydrant

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Fire Hydrant Testing

CrownFire will perform flow tests and marking of hydrants to determine and indicate the relative available fire service water supply from hydrants and to identify possible deficiencies that could be corrected to ensure adequate fire flows as needed.

Private_Fire_Hydrant

 

Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections or Repairs to Your Automatic Fire Sprinkler Pump at 1-877-243-9664.

Fire Hydrant Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

7   Repairs and Testing of Auotomatic Fire Sprinkler Systems

Automatic Fire Sprinkler Services, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Installation, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Inspection, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Repair, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Service, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Sales, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Engineering

Automatic Fire Sprinkler Systems Repairs and Testing

We Do Our Inspection and Service in Accordance with NFPA 13&25 and Fire Code

Never Compromise with Fire Protection – Use the Best Company and Product

Sprinkler System Inspections

Our certified sprinkler fitters have built their career on taking pride in performing thorough inspections and tests. Our commitment to a high-quality fire protection service gives you confidence that your building’s sprinkler system will work as designed when required.

Whenever you’re adding square footage to your building or put up a wall, you will require a modification to your current sprinkler system, contact our sales department at 1-877-243-9664.

Inspection Requirements

Sprinkler systems, including fire pumps, should be monitored constantly. The requirements set and other industry standards can be confusing and overwhelming. As fire protection specialists, our job is to make your job easier. We will ensure your system meets all these requirements and report any deficiency details to you.

We have summarized some of the code requirements for your reference below:

Monthly Inspections

Each month, CrownFire will visually inspect the following:

  • Control equipment and fire alarm systems
  • Valves, valve components, and trim, including water supply valves locked in the open position
  • Standpipe

In addition, during the appropriate monthly inspections, we conduct the required quarterly and semi-annual inspections and tests. This includes visually inspecting alarm devices, sprinkler system, specific connections, and valves quarterly, any private service main, and monitor nozzles annually.

Our fire inspection professionals also test your mechanical water flow devices, valves, low air pressure alarms, priming water and other devices and components, as required.

To schedule a monthly sprinkler system inspection, contact us today.

Annual Inspections

NFPA 25 requires that you visually inspect your sprinkler system each year.

  • General overview: visually inspect for proper installation and any apparent changes, alterations, additions, or damage
  • Visually inspect operation or condition of all valves, gauges, piping, bracing, sprinklers, mechanical and electrical alarms, pumps, and all other associated hardware

Wet and dry sprinkler systems, meanwhile, face different testing requirements. Annual functional testing should include

  • Wet system water flow alarm using the inspector’s test connection
  • Wet system main drain water flow
  • Dry system trip test with the control valve partially open
  • Drain dry system auxiliary low point drains before each winter

In addition, on the appropriate years, our fire protection technicians ensure your system complies with the three, five, and 10/20/50-year tests set out in NFPA 25 and other regulatory requirements. These inspections and tests include

Every three years:

  • Dry system full-flow trip, conducted through the inspector’s test valve, with the control valve open
  • Dry system air leakage

Every five years:

  • Sprinklers – extra-high temperature/corrosive atmosphere
  • Standpipe – full-flow test from a remote point
  • Manual/dry standpipes – hydrostatic test
  • Full-flow hose connection – pressure-reducing valves
  • Hydrostatic – Siamese connections (every three years in some locations)

To schedule your annual sprinkler system inspection and testing, contact us today.

Daily and Weekly Visual Inspections

NFPA and other standards also require you to conduct daily and weekly inspections of your sprinkler system. Initially, these inspections may be confusing. We can help train your staff on what to look for.

NFPA 25 requires daily or weekly visual inspections of the following:

  • Valves, components and trim
  • Cold weather enclosures
  • Standpipe

Your daily visual inspection should also include:

  • Air and water pressure gauges: Are they within acceptable ranges?
  • Heaters and thermometer in the sprinkler room. The room must be at least 4 degrees Celsius and the heater must be operational if outside temperatures are 5 degrees Celsius or below
  • Compressor, if any. If it runs, stops and starts again in less than five minutes, it is running continuously, and the sprinkler contractor needs to assess the situation.
  • Piping and fittings. Check for signs of air or water leakage.

Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections or Repairs to Your Automatic Fire Sprinkler Pump at 1-877-243-9664.

Automatic Sprinkler System Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

8   Wet Automatic Sprinkler Systems

Automatic Fire Sprinkler, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Installation, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Inspection, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Repair, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Service, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Sales, Automatic Fire Sprinkler Engineering

Wet Automatic Fire Sprinkler Systems

We Do Our Inspection and Service in Accordance with NFPA 13&25 and Fire Code

Never Compromise with Fire Protection – Use the Best Company and Product

Wet Sprinkler Systems

Wet sprinkler systems are the most common type of sprinkler system installed. A wet pipe system has water in the pipes in the ambient or normal condition and has heat responsive elements on all sprinklers. Thus, water is instantaneously discharged from a sprinkler when it actuates.

Wet_Automatic_Sprinkler_Systems
Call CrownFire Today for a Quotation on Installations, Inspections or Repairs to Your Automatic Fire Sprinkler Pump at 1-877-243-9664.

Automatic Sprinkler System Area Coverage for Toronto, Vaughan, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Burlington, Hamilton, Brantford, Kitchener, Cambridge, Woodstock, London, Niagra Falls, St. Catherines, Stoney Creek, Ontario

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