5 Ways to Avoid Sprinkler Accidents in Cold Weather

Frozen sprinkler head

Don’t let Winter Temps Be The Cause of Accidental Sprinkler Activation.

As the temperatures plummet, the risk of accidental fire sprinkler discharge increases.  Regular maintenance and testing is critical to ensure that the automatic fire sprinkler system is functioning properly.  However; the cool temperatures bring with it the additional risk of frozen pipes and damaged sprinkler heads.  Every year, the news is filled with stories about pipes bursting, sprinkler heads rupturing and the extensive, costly, water damage that results.

Don’t be the next news story!  This winter put a prevention plan in place to keep your building protected from accidental fire sprinkler activation.

5 Ways to Reduce the Risk of Sprinkler Accidents

1)      Check for drafts which could let in cold air, and then seal them.  Open windows, cracks in foundation, missing insulation, and lack of weather stripping can make the room cooler and increase the risk of frozen fire sprinklers or pipes.

2)      Close any cold weather valves.

3)      Keep the room temperature above 40 degree Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius)

4)      Keep secondary heating units away from the sprinkler heads to prevent accidental discharge from overheating.

5)      In the case of accidental discharge, keep a Shutgun sprinkler shut off tool nearby for fast and easy shut off.


 Most winter freeze ups tend to occur in the nooks and crannies that may miss a quick visual scan. Attics, basements, and wall and floor joists are often the more vulnerable areas. The key to avoiding the extensive damage from accidental fire sprinkler discharge is having a strategic prevention strategy.

Cold weather doesn’t have to be the arch nemesis for automatic fire sprinklers if the right steps are taken.

For more information visit: http://www.ecclesiastical.ca/2012/avoiding-freeze-ups-and-malfunctions-of-automatic-fire-sprinkler-systems/