Corrosion in fire sprinkler system

Sprinkler systems are an indispensable part of fire protection. In the United States the NFPA, National Fire Prevention Assosiation has developed a list of standards and codes. These rules are intended to increase the safety of people and facilities and to prevent major fires.
Fire sprinklers are required by law in open-plan offices or shopping malls, as well as in industrial or hazardous areas.
Such systems are designed to spray water into the affected rooms or onto the affected machinery at the first alarm or sign of a fire, in order to nip a developing fire in the bud if possible. Or to contain and extinguish it at an early stage. Sprinkler increase the safety of people in the building in the event of a fire.

Fire SprinklerAutomatic fire sprinkler system usually has a separate pipe system. Large pumps are mounted at the beginning in the sprinkler control center. From there, pipes lead to all areas that require fire protection. The pipes to the fire sprinklers are usually painted red. The thick lines then become thinner and thinner, similar to a tree. In most buildings, open-plan offices or in shopping malls, the installation of the pipes is done in the ceiling. From below, you can only see the sprinklers and the sensors.

Such a sprinkler system is never completely water tight, so extinguishing water must be refilled. For this purpose, small pressure maintenance pumps are distributed in the extinguishing network in several places. these small pumps are activated automatic, when the pressure falls below a set value. This is done so that the large pumps do not have to start up for the small quantities.

Sprinkler systems in frost-proof environment, are constantly filled with water and are under pressure. This is necessary in order to have enough water to extinguish a fire immediately. When the pressure is greatly reduced, large pumps are used to deliver extinguishing water.
In frost-prone environments, pressureless dry-pipe sprinkler systems are also installed today. In other words, systems in which there is no water. The advantage, no rust in the pipe, no refilling. The disadvantage is that a great deal of effort must be expended to bring sufficient water to the source of the fire quickly in the event of a fire.

From a water engineering point of view, there are two problems

When there is no fire, the water stands in the pipe. Stagnant water often leads to severe corrosion in the piping system. If there is heavy corrosion, there is a risk that if the fire sprinkler system is used, a lot of rust will be dislodged from the piping system and clog the sprinklers. Or even that the piping system will leak. Both can lead to the fact that no proper fire protection is ensured.
Increasingly, customers are also finding high levels of bacteria in their sprinkler systems. As long as the water is in the pipes, bacteria are not a problem. However, if people come into contact with this water, for example during maintenance, it can become a problem. Currently, there is no regulation on bacterial counts in sprinkler systems.

Fire sprinkler system free from rust

Ceiling Fire SprinklerMerus is successfully used here by many customers. The advantage of Merus rings is that they work even when there is little or no water flow. Merus changes the water in such a way that existing rust becomes unstable. The rust recedes over time and is flushed out, or does not form in the first place. If the pipes are clean, a protective layer of magnetite automatically forms on the inside of the pipe.

Checking the performance is simple: after installing the Merus rings, the system should be flushed regularly. So at the end of the different strands take water until it becomes clear again. Observe the color of the water, or analyze the water for iron and/or bacteria. Thereby the rust is flushed out. If only clear water comes out during flushing, there is no or almost no corrosion left in the sprinkler system. And the flushing can be reduced to the normal level again.



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