When you move into a home protected with home fire sprinklers, you may find that your sprinkler installer left valuable information about the care and maintenance of the system. This may include a placard attached to the riser or valve assembly in your home. HFSC’s Living With Sprinklers kit is very helpful. It provides details about the system, how it works and how to do a flow test. Testing and maintaining your home fire sprinklers is easy; it was deliberately designed to be easy for people living in the home.
Each month you should inspect the valves to ensure they are in the open position. If you have a pump or tank, check that the tank is full, and that the pump is working. Every six months you should run a simple flow test. If the system is monitored by an alarm company, be sure to notify the company prior to doing this test. If you do not feel comfortable performing these tasks, a local sprinkler contractor can help. The Canadian Automatic Sprinkler Association is a good resource as well.
The sprinkler system that came with your home has been hydraulically designed and approved by professionals. In some cases, your sprinklers may have been installed to permit alternatives to local building code requirements. Turning off the system not only exposes you and your family to greater risk of dying in a fire, but it may jeopardize other homes in your neighborhood. The home fire sprinkler system should never be modified without approval by a qualified professional.
Make sure that your children understand how fire sprinklers works and that they are not a toy. Never hang anything from a sprinkler to prevent the bulb from breaking causing the sprinkler to activate. The sprinkler cover plates must never be painted.
If you sell your home, your or the buyer should consider having the sprinkler system inspected by a qualified contractor to ensure that it is functioning as it was originally designed. Make sure to leave the Living With Sprinklers information for the buyer.
Following these simple maintenance practices and protecting the integrity of the original design will ensure that the home fire sprinkler system will be ready when you and your family need it. Visit HomeFireSprinklerCanada.ca for more information.