Fire accidents in residential structures can occur due to several reasons, and it is important to note both old and new homes are equally exposed to fire threats. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of home fire sprinklers to understand their importance.
Benefits of Home Fire Sprinklers
• Fire sprinklers are designed to detect temperature differences in indoor spaces, automatically getting into action irrespective of whether the home is occupied or otherwise. They protect homes even when the residents are away. However, they do not react to false alarms from smoke or a candle flame, but sound an alert when there is a significant rise in temperature, enough to trigger water flow.
• Timely notification to residents and the local fire department allow people sufficient time to save their lives and precious belongings, and respond to the emergency.
• As the system tends to instantly identify and control fires at their initial stages, sprinklers help minimize damage by preventing fires from spreading. Both the heat and smoke from large fires can prove quite devastating.
• Large homes definitely tend to benefit from installing sprinkler systems as they localize the damage, contrary to popular belief that sprinkler systems can cause extensive damage across the entire home with a generous spray of water. Fitting every room with a sprinkler will help stop the fire right at the source, preventing it from spreading to adjacent rooms. In case multiple sprinklers are installed in a large space, the one closest to the fire will be activated first.
In either case, water from the sprinkling system has a limited reach and impact, just enough to put out the fire. On the other hand, large fires are usually tackled using powerful jets of water that are capable of destroying property beyond repair.
• Sprinklers not only can improve aesthetics, especially when one opts for recessed models, usually available in range of metallic finishes. They also tend to increase the value of homes, when it comes to putting them up for sale or renting them out.
• Another important benefit is that these state-of-the-art fire sprinkler systems protect homes from damages caused by fire, bringing down the chances of home insurance claims. Insurance providers usually offer lesser premiums for homes with smoke detectors and fire sprinklers, which can help save a considerable sum of money.
• Home sprinklers are quite cost-effective when compared to the immense benefits they offer. Average installation costs roughly amount to just under $1.5 per square foot covered by the sprinkler.
How Does The Sprinkler System Work?
Understanding how fire sprinklers work will help accept the fact that water damage from these systems aren’t as costly as the damage caused by unattended fires.
• Each sprinkler head holds a glass container filled with liquid glycerin, which expands when heated.
• A fire in the room heats the air, forcing it up towards the ceiling. Temperature of air continues to increase with rising flames.
• When temperature reaches anywhere around 135-165 degrees Fahrenheit, the expanding glycerin causes the glass container to break, activates the sprinkler head, and opens a valve in the hidden plumbing to release a focused downward spray of water to extinguish the fire.
These systems are intended to quickly douse the fire, failing which they anyway buy enough time to respond to the emergency.
How to Choose The Right Home Fire Sprinkler System?
There are basically two types of fire sprinkler systems to choose from — the wet pipe and dry pipe. However, the task is better done with the help of a reliable, professional fire safety contractor. You can find them at your local companies that offer fire protection services.
Wet and dry pipe fire sprinklers.
The wet pipe system comprises a set of interconnected pipes filled with water at high pressure, which is released instantly when the sprinkler head is activated. This system, however, may not be suitable for home use as the water stored can freeze during cold climes.
The dry pipe system, on the other hand, has compressed air stored in relatively larger pipes. Activating the sprinkler first releases compressed air, causing water to be forcibly drawn into these pipes and then released to put out the fire.
Building codes at present do not clearly address the need for sprinklers in homes. However, opting for them will help tackle fire emergencies, if at all they arise, without loss of lives or property.