Maintenance Tips for a Dry Fire Detection System

Technology Blog

Most industrial facilities are equipped with wet fire detection systems. The preference is hinged on the fact that water comes out of sprinklers the moment a fire alarm goes off.  A wet system is different from a dry fire detection system because the piping and sprinkler systems contain pressurised air or nitrogen. Therefore, a dry fire detection system is efficient in as far as water consumption goes. This is attributed to a delay between a fire alarm going off and water being released from sprinklers. However, you can only benefit from the efficiency of a dry fire detection system if you maintain it regularly and properly. This article highlights tips for the correct maintenance of a dry fire detection system.

Inspect Piping for Adequate Pitch -- As indicated above, the main difference between a dry fire detection system and a wet system is that the latter contains pressurised air between a sprinkler and a water release valve. However, that does not mean that the system will always be dry. In fact, there is always some residual water inside a piping system after testing or after a fire incident. The water will condense and cause rapid corrosion if it is not drained out of a piping system. A properly installed and maintained dry fire detection system has a pitch to allow water to drain back to a riser. Therefore, it is critical to inspect a piping system regularly and ensure it has an adequate angle for residual water to flow back.  

Exercise Auxiliary Drains -- Drainage of the residual water inside the fire detection system piping is mandatory to prevent condensation and eventual corrosion. The functionality is enhanced via auxiliary drains that eventually take the water out of a dry fire detection system completely. However, it is essential to note that auxiliary drains in a dry fire detection system are manually-operated. Therefore, facility managers must access and exercise the drains to eradicate the water. It is advisable to open auxiliary drains several times a week to confirm that a dry fire detection system is free of water.

Inspect Pressure Settings -- The water valves in a dry fire detection system only open if sensors detect a fall in air pressure from the surrounding environment. Notably, pressure settings are predetermined and fed to a system. However, the settings and configurations can change for one reason or another. For instance, a safety manager can alter the settings when instructing interns on how a dry fire detection system works. If the premise manager forgets to reset the pressure settings to the original values, then water valves might fail to open as expected during a fire incident. Therefore, always make a point of inspecting a dry fire detection system to ensure it is within the predetermined air pressure range.

To learn more, contact a dry fire detection system supplier.


19 June 2020

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