Sprinkler Systems

I. Why do we have sprinkler systems in buildings?

The main reason for sprinkler systems is life safety above all else. Automatic fire sprinklers provide an additional measure of safety for both building occupants and firefighters responding to a fire in a building.

Sprinkler systems also provide an effective means of fire control. In most cases, they are successful at putting the fire out. This is usually achieved with a fraction of the water used by firefighter hand hoselines.

Considerable savings on building construction costs can be realized with a sprinkler system. A sprinkler system also permits greater flexibility in the size and use of a building.

II. What are sprinkler systems?

Sprinkler systems can be very simple to extremely complex. In new construction, they consist of a dedicated water supply system serving ceiling mounted heads. Heads are placed according to the amount of square footage in a room or area.

For most people, the most visible element of a sprinkler system is the ceiling mounted sprinkler head.

pendant fire sprinkler head

Another part of a sprinkler system that is quite visible is the Post Indicator Valve and the Fire Department connections on the exterior of the building.

fire sprinkler post indicator valves

The heart of the sprinkler system is the main supply lines which are usually located in the mechanical equipment rooms for the building. Most people never see this part of the system.

fire sprinkler main riser assembly

In some cases, very large buildings and high rise buildings, in particular, have a dedicated fire pump for the sprinkler system. This fire pump will help maintain the pressure within the sprinkler system for the building it serves.

fire pump

III. Where are the sprinkler systems located on campus?