Have you ever seen those movies where a small amount of smoke triggers all the fire sprinklers in the building, making everything all wet? This misconception about fire sprinklers has made people wary of fire sprinkler system installation. Although fire sprinklers seem like a water hazard, they don’t cause as much damage as one would think. Despite those popular misconceptions, it has become more common for public buildings and businesses to have fire sprinkler systems in place in case of a fire. If they don’t work as shown in the movies, how exactly do fire sprinkler systems work?
A fire has started in a building that has a fire sprinkler system.
The heat from the fire triggers a heat sensor right next to the sprinkler in the first zone. The heat sensor sends a signal to the system control panel, activating the alarm bell. The heat sensor in the second zone gets triggered next. This activates the alarm strobe or horn, signaling the air conditioning and ventilation systems to shut down. There is then a 60-second countdown until it signals the sprinkler system to release the water.
As you can see, fire sprinkler systems are much less chaotic than what everyone sees in the movies.