With the entire country sinking into a below-freezing polar plunge, there is at least one concern that is on everyone’s minds this winter— frozen pipes, one of the biggest risks of property damage during the cold winter months. But have you ever stopped to think about your fire sprinkler system being affected by these biting cold temps? Your wet pipe sprinkler systems could become the cause of considerable water damage to your building, which would call for major business disruption plus expensive and time-consuming repairs. To help you keep your fire protection system and your building in tip-top shape, here are five preventative measures to consider this winter season.
Maintain enough heat during periods of extreme cold to keep the fire sprinkler pipes from freezing.
The number one cause of freezing wet pipe fire sprinkler systems is due to a lack of adequate heat in your facility. This can occur by the shutting down of your heating system, heat escaping from cracks or holes in your building, or any other cause of insufficient heat in your facility. To make sure your place is nice and warm, check your heating system to make sure that it is delivering heat to all areas of the facility, and check room temps frequently, especially if they get near 40 degrees.
Inspect your fire sprinkler system and look for any leaks or damage.
Just like anything in life, your automatic fire sprinkler system can run into problems and become run-down over time. Examine your system to ensure that its integrity isn’t compromised, especially in these low winter temps. Repair, replace, or refasten broken, missing, or loose sprinkler pipe hangers. This will ensure proper pitch of the sprinkler piping and will assure good drainage. To determine if above or underground piping may have frozen water, contact your fire protection professional at S&S.
Physically inspect all buildings and any area protected by automatic sprinkler protection before the cold weather season arrives.
This is to ensure that there are no areas with inadequate heat and that everything is in place so that the elements of your fire protection system are not exposed to the chilly weather. Keep your eye out for places where cold air could be coming through, such as broken windows, cracks in the structure, unsealed or open doors, loose sidings, etc. Make sure you check for drafts or air leaks in seldom visited areas where there are fire sprinkler pipes. After your inspection, be sure to repair anything in your facility that could promote frozen sprinkler pipes.
Freeze-ups in wet sprinkler systems occur most frequently during weekend or other shut down periods when a sudden cold snap.
We know that the weekends and holidays are times reserved for you to spend with your family and friends— not for worrying about building maintenance. But, it’s smart to keep in mind that these are the times when most fire sprinkler freeze-ups occur. Make sure you follow the proper steps of assuring your system is safe from the chill before your establishment will be closed for an extended period of time. For added security, temperature-signaling devices monitored by alarm services can be installed to alert you when your system is in danger of a freeze.
At S&S Sprinkler, we believe that prevention is better than the cure. We want to make sure your automatic fire sprinkler system, facility, and business are sustained through these frigid months. Contact S&S Sprinkler to talk office fire safety at at sssprinkler.com, or call 1-800-443-5897 for any fire sprinkler, alarm, & office security questions.
Stay warm. Stay safe!
S&S does more than just design and install fire sprinkler systems. We can also inspect, maintain, and repair when necessary.
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