Ryan Fireprotection technicians are experts at NFPA codes, which is critical since we provide regularly scheduled inspections of sprinkler and fire alarm systems for our customers in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Illinois, and all over the Midwest. Here are the top five most common sprinkler system deficiencies we encounter on our inspections.
1. Painted or Loaded Heads: Dust or other foreign material including paint overspray can cause a sprinkler head to malfunction. Sometimes these can be cleaned, but most often the sprinkler head will have to be replaced.
2. Systems Due for a Five Year Inspection: Many customer do not realize when their system is due for a five year inspection. At Ryan Fireprotection, we tag every system we inspect with a date and provide an online portal so our service customers know when their system is due for this more intensive inspection. The Five Year Inspection is more in depth than an annual inspection, requiring us to take the end of the line apart to check for sludge buildup and to flush the valves. On dry systems, scale buildup can occur when the system is tripped and residual water dries in the line. When a system is tripped, it can also push the scale to the end of the pipe along with rocks and other debris like paint brushes and gloves. You would be surprised at the kind of things we find inside a system which can occur during maintenance of water lines outside of the sprinkler system.
3. Head Testing: According to NFPA requirements, standard response heads must be tested every 50 years, and quick response heads every 10 years. We service many large buildings, schools, and warehouses that were built or updated in the 1960s and are now requiring these inspections. Ryan keeps track of scheduled inspections in its customer portal to take the worry out of having to remember when your system is due for any type of inspection.
4. Failed Back Flow: A back flow preventer keeps contaminated water in a sprinkler system from going back into the municipal water system. While NFPA 25 has changed the requirements in recent years, testing is still required by local codes, and we frequently find back flow preventers not working properly.
5. Missing Spare Heads or Sprinkler Head Wrench: If you have a wet system with 299 or fewer total sprinkler heads, NFPA 25 requires that you have a minimum of 6 spare sprinkler heads in case of emergency repairs, and 2 of each type, depending on what type of system you have in your facility. These spare heads and head wrench are usually stored in a head box on site, although we frequently find that customers do not have the minimum required in the box.
If you would like Ryan Fireprotection to schedule an inspection on your sprinkler or fire alarm system, feel free to give us a call at 800-409-7606 or complete our Contact Us form.