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Common Deficiencies for Sprinkler Systems

Sprinkler systems can make a world of difference when it comes to protecting your facility from fire damage. They are on duty 24/7 to help extinguish a fire automatically and report an alarm condition to the fire department. Despite the good that sprinkler systems do for fire prevention, there are many things that can go wrong with a system if the building manager is not vigilant and proactive about its upkeep. Below are three things to keep in mind that could lead to system noncompliance or failure to extinguish a fire.

  1. Painted Sprinkler Heads. Painting a sprinkler head inhibits it from functioning as intended. If a sprinkler head is painted, code requires that it be replaced. Be sure to clearly communicate that sprinkler heads are not to be painted during renovation projects.
  2. Lack of Proper Maintenance. In order to ensure that your system will be operational during a fire event, it is crucial that it is regularly tested, inspected and maintained. Periodic testing and inspection is the key if an issue that will cause the sprinkler system to fail is to be discovered and remedied prior to an emergency.
  3. Inadequate Coverage. Building occupancies and uses change over time, and the fire hazards associated with the space will change with it. Just because a business inherits a sprinkler system and it will function in an emergency does not mean that it adequately covers the fire hazard. When moving into a new space or changing the primary usage of the space, it is important to assess the coverage of the sprinkler system and make sure that the system can supply adequate water to cover the hazard.

A licensed fire protection company like Cintas can perform periodic inspections of your system, ensuring that it is free of deficiencies. Should a deficiency exist, it is imperative to get it repaired as soon as possible, as to not compromise the integrity of the system.