FAQ Sprinklers

Fire & Safety Ltd |  FAQ Sprinklers

Frequently Asked Questions

In what sort of houses are sprinkler systems most suitable for?
Family homes, terraced housing, residential retirement complexes, community care homes, isolated rural properties, holiday homes/baches and private homes where the occupants are unable to respond appropriately to a fire situation, such as the elderly or disabled.

Any type of property can be protected, some more unusual places where we have fitted them are:

Historic buildings
Workshops and storage rooms.

If you have a risk we can protect it.
Where should sprinklers go?
Everywhere, including attached garages that may be converted into living spaces. It has been assessed that unattached garages, bathroom, laundry, wardrobes, conservatory, sub-floor area and ceiling do not require sprinklers as most fatal fires do not start there. It is entirely up to the owner if they would like them there or not.
Won't a sprinkler flood my home and cause a lot of damage?
No. Only the sprinkler head(s) affected by the fire will go off. Ninety percent of fires are put out with one sprinkler head - ultimately causing a lot less damage and a lot less flooding.
What does it cost?
The average cost of installing a home sprinkler system, during construction, in a simple three bedroom home, ranges from $3000.

A Retrofit system may be more expensive due to access to fit the pipework.

Please contact us for a free estimate, you will be surprised.
Does it look ugly?
No. Residential sprinklers are smaller than commercial ones and there are a few different types to choose from - we try to cater for everybody's needs! Concealed types look the best.
Standard Sprinkler
An exposed head that is fitted on a ceiling. An escutcheon (the plate around the sprinkler) can be fitted to create a better looking finish.
Standard Sprinkler
Concealed Sprinkler
The sprinkler is concealed above the ceiling, and only a round disc can be seen. This is a more attractive finish. In the case of a fire, the cover plate drops of at 57C and the sprinkler drops down. The head activated at 68C or higher. Finished in white, special colours may be obtained on request.
Concealed Sprinkler
Will a Sprinkler devalue my property?
A professionally installed sprinkler system would be considered a chattel when selling a property.
I have low water pressure
New sprinkler heads are designed to work on very low pressure (around 50-75Pa). We design the pipework to suit the pressure available, or fit suitable pumps. This can be a bonus where a shared water supply for domestic use is required.
Click here to see a fire progress with and without a sprinkler system.
Will the water from the sprinkler cause more damage than the fire?
With a sprinkler-controlled fire, the total water usage would be around 340-720 litres. A non-sprinkler-controlled fire would use approx 27,500 litres of water. An uncontrolled fire doubles in size every 30 seconds and would take approx 30 minutes for the fire to be subdued. Therefore, with a sprinkler system installed, damage will be kept to a minimum.
Will Sprinklers leak?
The sprinkler system is pressure tested to over three times the normal operating pressure. Because sprinklers are not continually opened and closed they do not wear and are not likely to develop leaks.
Do sprinklers activate accidentally?
Sprinklers are designed to activate when a fire is becoming life threatening. They require the temperatures of a fire to activate them. They can be accidentally broken or damaged by a physical blow so caution is advised when working around them. Concealed are less likely to sustain damage. The chances of a sprinkler head falsely activating , are about 1 in 16million.
Is it hard to maintain?
No. This type of home sprinkler system does not require much maintenance. Servicing is only required once a year to comply with current standards or when they have been activated following a fire or when a sprinkler head has been damaged.
How many sprinklers will operate if there is a fire?
Sprinklers are designed to operate quickly, before a fire can spread. It is usually only the sprinkler closest to the starting point of the fire that will activate. This will normally be an enough to extinguish the fire. On rare occasions more than one head may operate but this is usually confined to one fire cell (room).
How long do the Fire Brigade take to attend to a fire?
This depends on where you live and the traffic at the time of a fire. Whilst the brigade respond as fast as they can, it only takes 30 seconds to double the size of a fire so if they take 5 minutes the fire will be 1000 times bigger. There is an excellent chance that the fire will be out long before they arrive.
Is this new technology been out for long?
Sprinklers have been used since the1870's to protect lives and property.

Domestic sprinklers have been routinely installed in the USA for 35 years. Whole towns are sprinklered with amazing results. There are now many homes in New Zealand with sprinkler systems.

Fire & Safety Ltd |  FAQ Sprinklers