Preventing Loss with Fire-suppression Sprinkler Systems

Preventing Loss with Fire-suppression Sprinkler Systems

Retrofitting your property with fire-suppression sprinkler systems or demanding their addition to your newly built property might add expense today but may help you achieve significant cost savings in the long term. Having an up-to-date, effective and well-maintained sprinkler system will help you achieve significantly lower property insurance premiums, reduce losses in the event of a fire and get your business up and running faster post-loss. Consider adding sprinkler systems to protect your property—and your bottom line.

The Basics

Fire-suppression sprinkler systems are used to control or extinguish fires in the early stages. They help to mitigate the hazards for both building occupants and firefighters by spraying water directly onto the fire source as soon as the sensor indicates a certain temperature has been reached. These systems could greatly decrease your losses in the case of a fire.

While many types of sprinkler systems exist, wet pipe and dry pipe are the most common. Wet-pipe sprinkler systems are constantly filled with water and are triggered when the ambient air temperature reaches a certain degree threshold. Most sprinkler systems in use today are wet-pipe systems.

If your facility has special considerations, it might be important to explore a dry-pipe system. Dry-pipe sprinkler systems are filled with air until activated, at which point the surrounding pressure changes, allowing water to flow through the pipes. Dry-pipe sprinkler systems are used in areas that are susceptible to freezing temperatures or contain expensive equipment that should not be near water.

Less common systems include deluge, pre-action, foam water and water spray. You’ll need to research which type will best serve your purposes.

Benefits of Sprinklers

In considering the installation of sprinkler systems, you are likely concerned about the cost. It may seem prohibitive; however, the cost to you would be much greater if a fire occurs and there are no sprinkler systems present.

Sprinkler systems can save you money in many different ways, meaning that in the long run, they pay for themselves.

The installation of a sprinkler system in your building is a smart financial decision. It lowers the risk associated with the building, resulting in lower insurance premiums. It can also qualify a building for certain income tax reductions that it would not otherwise qualify for.

Liability is another reason for installing sprinkler systems in your building. Research has shown that the public considers sprinkler systems a “reasonable level of care,” which could prevent building owners from having to pay out thousands of dollars per life lost in the event of a fire where a sprinkler system was not present.

In some cases, sprinkler systems are required by building codes and/or laws. All high-rise apartments and office buildings must have either a full, operational sprinkler system or an engineered life safety system. One big difference between the two is that the engineered life safety system does not pay for itself in the long run. Keeping yourself in the loop now about the codes and laws surrounding sprinkler systems will save you potential headaches later on.

An equally important consideration in installing a sprinkler system is tied to business interruption/business income: the majority of companies that have fires never reopen their doors. With sprinkler systems installed, the chance of a fire interrupting business is minimized— sprinkler systems can contain fires in small areas, decreasing the amount of damage and making it possible to reopen buildings and operations more quickly.

Because fires are a relatively common occurrence, it is important to protect yourself and your investments from damage. In addition to the benefits noted above, as a result of installing sprinkler systems in your properties, you will also have peace of mind that your properties are safe and well-protected.

Download our Sprinkler System Maintenance Checklist.

For more information on risk management, or to find out how to reduce your insurance costs call CMB at 780.424.2727 or click here to get a quote