Think of the systems that keep your building protected from fire as a delicate ecosystem. Each component works together to detect and extinguish fire, alerting building occupants when evacuation is necessary. When one system is not fully functioning, an entire building is at risk. But to keep these systems up and running takes regular maintenance and attention.
Required fire protection system inspections can be costly, but there are a few ways that your business can save money while maintaining a fully functional fire protection system.
For example, at Fire Systems, Inc., all technicians are cross trained, meaning one tech can do the job of two on multiple systems. Because of this training, the company can avoid additional truck charges per vehicle by reducing the labor of sending additional techs from other divisions. The company can also save customers the minimum charge of $145.00 to send out a fire extinguisher tech if the tech already on-site is serving both your sprinkler system and fire extinguisher system.
You can also sync up your fire protection system inspections if working with one company for all services. This would save money in fewer disruptions and downtime in addition to extra labor costs for customers requiring a dedicated escort.
Keep up with current maintenance to avoid expensive repairs
Fire alarm systems is another example. Fire alarm systems require quarterly and annual testing by a professional, but your facilities manager should also be conducting regular visual inspections weekly or monthly. Something as simple as dead batteries in a control panel can turn into a service call which would cost much more than the price of replacement batteries.
Your fire protection company can put your systems on the appropriate inspection schedule. Just be sure you keep up with those inspections each year or when required to avoid more costly preventable repairs.
Winterize where applicable
Not all fire protection systems will need to be prepared for cooler weather, but your building’s fire sprinkler system will. In the winter, the most common sprinkler issues occur when accumulated water freezes in dry pipe systems. Avoid this from occurring by keeping up with regular inspections and following some helpful tips.
Fire Systems provides its customers with a checklist for winter that includes the following tips for wet pipe sprinkler systems:
Ensure building shell is in good condition; close unnecessary openings
Maintain building heat at a minimum of 40℉ in all normally heated areas/areas with wet pipe sprinkler system
Check coldest points of building to ensure temp is at least 40℉ (i.e. eaves over shipping doors, spaces without direct heat)
Consider low temperature alarms in problematic areas
Identify vulnerable areas (i.e. crawl spaces, attics, above suspended ceilings where water piping pass through) and provide a way for heat to reach those areas
Place thermostats and/or low temp alarms at strategic locations to monitor building temp
Check insulation in attic areas/other areas near wet pipe sprinkler pipes
And for dry pipe sprinkler systems:
Maintain heat at a minimum of 40℉ in dry pipe valve rooms, fire pump rooms, and all areas protected by wet pipe sprinkler system
Check that heaters are thermostatically controlled; do not use portable heaters
Drain all low point drains weekly during freezing weather
Have additional drains installed if necessary
Repair air leaks to prevent system from tripping if compressor power is lost
Air supplied to the compressor should come from a dry, room-temp source; if not possible, consider installing an air dryer/using nitrogen
If you have any concerns, contact your fire protection company.
Choose a company that does it all
Fire Systems, Inc. is one of the few fire protection companies that offers fire protection system inspections, maintenance, repair, and installation. From vehicle systems to kitchen hoods, we do it all. No job is too small or too big for us.
We have over three decades of experience in the fire protection company and have been proudly serving the southeast as a leader in our industry. Our reputation says it all. We are family-owned and family-operated.
We care about your business and will work with you to maintain inspections while saving you money. Give us a call today at 770-333-7979 for a free quote or visit our website for more information.