Ensuring your business is outfitted with the right fire safety equipment and systems is incredibly important. If you do not adequately invest in fire safety, you risk severe damage to your property, inventory, and reputation. On top of that, being unprepared to handle fires can cost lives.
Amongst the most important pieces of fire safety equipment is an industry-appropriate fire suppression system. With that said, fire sprinklers can be unreliable and even completely ineffective if they are not appropriately maintained.
Key to the necessary maintenance requirements is having your fire sprinkler system thoroughly inspected and tested by a professional and certified fire sprinkler inspection company.
To help you gauge the qualifications and legitimacy of fire sprinkler inspection companies before hiring them, we will cover some essential questions you should ask. So, let’s get started!
6 Questions to Ask a Fire Sprinkler Inspection Company Prior to Hiring Them
1. Does your company possess all of the relevant licensing and certifications for this region?
While this will require a little bit of research on your end, you always want to make sure that the fire sprinkler inspection company that you are thinking about hiring is actually qualified to operate where you live.
Not only will this prove their authorization to inspect your fire sprinklers, but it will also prove that they have met the necessary safety standards.
For example, the National Fire Protection Association offers NFPA Fire Sprinkler Inspection Certification that all fire sprinkler technicians should possess. Each country and region will also have local certifications and requirements that fire sprinkler inspection companies must hold in good standing.
Remember, if the company you are interviewing has all of the appropriate licensing, they will be happy to share this with you.
2. Is your company adequately insured and bonded to cover damages incurred due to a poorly performed inspection?
Accidents can happen, and you want to ensure that the inspection company you have hired has the proper insurance and bonding to protect you financially should anything go wrong.
Not only will this help you avoid liability if an accident occurs during the inspection, but their insurance should have you covered if their inspection is not up to a professional standard.
If something happens due to something the inspection company overlooked, their insurance company will work with yours to determine financial liability. If they aren’t insured, you are always taking a risk.
3. Which clients have you worked with in the past, and can you provide references?
Just like any industry, a fire inspection company’s previous work and clients can provide you with valuable insight into their professionalism and results.
Just like holding the appropriate certifications, a reputable fire sprinkler inspection company will be more than happy to share references from satisfied clients they have worked with in the past.
If they have previously inspected fire sprinkler systems used in your specific industry, that is always beneficial. Not only will they be familiar with all of the fire codes and regulations in your industry, but they will also understand the unique hazards that could come from carrying out their work in your type of facility.
You should also take the time to ask them how long their company has been operating. While the fire safety industry welcomes new companies and inspectors, experience can go a long way when it comes to identifying issues with fire sprinkler systems.
4. Can you provide an overview of your company’s fire sprinkler inspection process and explain how frequently you will conduct your inspections?
Even if you do not know the first thing about what goes into a fire sprinkler system inspection, they should be able to give you a detailed overview of everything that they will do if you hire them.
If they are professional about their work, they will be able to provide a thorough and detailed breakdown of everything that they will do to ensure that your fire suppression system is operating safely and efficiently.
If you have done your research about the process ahead of time, you will be able to determine if their process is compliant with industry standards.
You can also ask them about the frequency of their inspections should you choose to hire them. If they adhere to code, basic tests and inspections should occur quarterly, meaning every three months.
5. Can you provide itemized estimates for the cost of each inspection, and do you offer maintenance and repair services?
While it is essential that your fire sprinkler system is inspected and tested by trained professionals, having an idea of costs will allow you to budget appropriately.
Most fire sprinkler inspection companies will offer discounted rates for those who sign up for regular inspections. By signing a long-term contract, you should be able to reduce the amount your business is spending on inspections.
You can also save money if you ask ahead of time about prices for maintenance and routine repairs. Most fire sprinkler inspection companies also service faulty and damaged fire sprinkler systems. Clarity on maintenance costs ahead of time will help you avoid costly surprises.
If they perform repairs, you can also act on their availability and response time. If something goes wrong with your fire sprinkler system, you want to work with a repair company that can act fast, even if the issue occurs outside of traditional business hours.
6. Will you provide detailed reports of your findings following an inspection?
A comprehensive and timely report following an inspection will keep you informed about the condition of your fire sprinkler system. It can also help you anticipate upcoming repairs and maintenance costs.
Information about fire sprinkler maintenance and inspections could also be incredibly valuable if you ever face a fire-related insurance claim. The best fire sprinkler inspection companies will provide you with detailed reports following every single inspection.
What Can You Do If Your Fire Sprinkler System Is Activated Accidentally?
Even the most thoroughly inspected and maintained fire sprinkler systems can misfire. Unfortunately, this can result in destructive and expensive water damage to your facility. Even if your fire sprinkler system activates for the right reasons, it can continue to expel water even after it entirely extinguishes a fire.
Given that a single fire sprinkler head can release as much as 60 gallons of water in a single minute, you do not want to be stuck standing around as water destroys your equipment, inventory, and property.
With the Shutgun, you give yourself the ability to shut off fire sprinkler heads in seconds. This easy-to-use, budget-friendly fire sprinkler head shut-off tool can save your business tens of thousands of dollars.
If you are ready to learn more about the Shutgun, click the link below: