Fire Suppression Systems: Locate, Drain and Turn off System

Hey, now it’s my friend Shana Acquisto, real estate brokers and co-owners with Acquisto Real Estate. And it is a lovely, lovely day that we have here. Sun is shining, but we need to speak about fire suppression systems, the problems they caused, how we can prevent them in the future, and maybe some things to think about here, like what is it? Why are these here?

Ok? Yeah, fire suppression systems. Typically you hear about them in commercial buildings. Yeah. And a lot of times you might see them in town homes.

And oh, sorry, apartment buildings, things like that, but if a home is over a certain square footage, a lot of the city codes will require them to be installed. So I think it’s around fifty five hundred square feet, six thousand square feet in other cities and above.

They require you to install these systems. And the problem with these systems, you know, I think it’s great.Yes, they do a great job if they have to be activated. However, if you look at this photo, I think Omkar showing these are all the pipes that are in your ceiling that are running to the various heads, sprinkler heads.

And if we look over here, we have the actual system here and this is going up and then it’s going around right to each of these different places. They have different colors labeled because they’re different lines. So they have several lines going in here. And this is just kind of an issue. Oh, actually, it’s the hot and the cold. The blue in the red are the hot and cold. Sorry. And then this one is the fire suppression system that’s going throughout the place.

So the minimum requirements for size that the cities are requiring for residential construction is when the homes get larger, is when they want these fire suppression systems in place.

Or like I said, you see them in like little town homes connected together.

We see those a lot. So the  problem with these and what we’ve seen previously this last week is these pipes hold water all the time. They’ve got to be ready to if they’re activated. Can’t wait for the water to. You know, to come through, so it’s holding water all the time, if it freezes, then that’s a problem, right? Because when water freezes, it expands so it can bust the pipe and you can have a major disaster. So. I did there are some other things that some pros and cons with this as well, I was reading yesterday that it was saying most of the malfunctions of these systems are human error and it’s like one out of 16 million when it fails. That’s not human error. So, you know, the good thing is you need well, what you guys need to know is you need to know enough about this. If you have somebody purchasing a larger home or town home, know enough about this to have this discussion and bring it to their attention.

Something I didn’t really think about is you need to have these things serviced four times a year. Wow. That’s a lot, four times a year that you need to go through and have these things checked.

So let’s open this one up here a little bit and show a couple of different options on how they often will present themselves. So you might see them as one of these. You’d recognize probably the one in the upper left here as one that you’d see in a commercial application. This is probably more of a residential, you know, application or town home kind of upper level office. So it’s the same thing. But internally, what you essentially have is some ball valve or balas right here. And there’s something that happens to trigger this when this is caught or, you know, has a challenge with it, whatever that happens to be. And all of a sudden the water comes rushing in. And it does seem ridiculous that these do have water in them all the time.

And I don’t know if this is true, but the  water shut off. You have that. It’s not your main water shutoff valve. It’s a separate one. And you need to know where it is. And I’ve heard a lot of times once it’s activated and heat activated, you can’t shut that thing off. Yeah. So remember, just, you know, inform people that you need to have these things checked and tested four times a year, four times a year. That’s that’s a lot. Mm hmm. The other thing is they can corrode. Right. You have corrosion and have leaks that way. But these are in your ceiling. They hold water. It’s it’s something you want to know about. My question yesterday was, hey, can you opt out of having this? And if it’s a city code, then you can.

So and it’s crazy that it’s normally in the largest structures and the probably the most expensive ones are. These were all challenges.

We do have a video of a friend of ours shared with us yesterday, and it’s not really high quality, but I’m hoping you guys can see it. This home, I think, is almost 10000 square feet. And it was totally, totally abandoned.

They were going through a renovation. So they had just started the renovation. They ripped out all the kitchen cabinets. They had the new kitchen cabinets in there. And this is the ceiling and there’s just water gushing in


And it had been coming in and you noticed out the windows that they carried on this whole entire area.
Almost all the furniture, everything is just so volatile. The fire had to say the least.

It definitely suppressed anything that was going to be going on in there. It totally worked. But that creates a challenge there.

So it’s not just freaks. It’s you know, these are things that I think people don’t necessarily think about.

And in our area, you know, we have a lot of larger homes and maybe they’re starting to get a little older and maybe people didn’t even think to to check or test them. So just be aware. Buyer beware. Mm hmm. Right. So, well, that’s one heck of a topic.

And I hope that we have a lot of homes that we sell this calendar year that have fire suppression systems in Chat if You know, if you’ve sold a home with a fire suppression system in it, the reason for that is you probably sold a large home or an expensive home or a townhouse or something like that. Right. So just stay active and let us know we like here and engaging with everybody. So. Yeah. Thank you guys very much. Let’s close that topic.

Episode Recorded Live on YouTube 2.24.21

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