In 2016, the U.S. Fire Administration estimated that 96,800 nonresidential building fires occurred, resulting in numerous deaths and costing billions in damages. Residential properties suffered from an even greater number of fires, causing even more fatalities and financial loss. Maintaining appropriate safety features such as fire sprinkler certification may help safeguard from this harm, protecting people and assets.
What Is the Law?
California building code requires property owners comply with NFPA 25, a guideline for evaluating water-based fire protection systems. This baseline, created by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), mandates that residential and commercial property owners have annual inspections and obtain a five-year certification for all fire sprinkler systems. If you need fire sprinkler certification California, hire a licensed professional to ensure your building is up to code.
How Do the Systems Work?
Fire spreads quickly, and people need time to evacuate safely. A fire sprinkler system, also known as an automatic extinguishing systems (AES), attempts to provide that time. An AES is designed to control a fire until the fire department arrives. How does it do that? The complex structure has heat-sensitive sprinklers. For example, some sprinkler heads contain glass bulbs filled with liquid glycerin. The hot air from the fire reaches the bulb, and the glycerin heats up until it reaches a boiling point. This causes the bulb to burst, triggering the sprinkler. The sprinkler releases pressurized water that has enough force to cover a large area that may minimize the fire.
What Does the Inspector Check?
An inspector should examine several components of the system. Does the water flow work properly? Are the pipes free of leaks or clogs? Do the valves and drain function as needed? At the five-year mark, the evaluator will pay close attention to the cleanliness of the water supply as well as the structural integrity of the pipes.
Regularly checking the fire sprinkler system and keeping up with the five-year certification provides an additional safety measure. It is one that might mitigate a fire’s damaging effects.