When to Call for Fire Sprinkler Repair – Common Signs of Damage

Technician repairing a fire sprinkler system

Fire sprinklers are an essential component of fire safety equipment. Their unique ability to detect and extinguish fires without human involvement makes them incredibly useful for various fire safety applications.

While fire sprinklers can protect lives and property in just about any type of residential, commercial, or industrial building, significant damage to the fire sprinkler system can reduce their effectiveness or even lead to a complete system failure. These damages can range from basic wear and tear to full-blown mechanical issues.

Today, we will cover everything you need to know about fire sprinkler repair, including the most common signs of damage. To help stress the importance of maintaining your fire sprinkler system, we will also cover some consequences of neglecting damage and explain when you should call for professional repair services!

Common Signs of Fire Sprinkler Damage

As mentioned, a damaged or poorly maintained fire sprinkler system can drastically reduce its ability to function during an emergency. Not only can damaged fire sprinklers malfunction when they are most needed, they can even misfire at inappropriate times, which could lead to significant water damage to equipment, inventory, and the building itself.

Here are some of the most common signs of a damaged fire sprinkler system:

Dripping or Leaking Sprinklers

Any dripping or more significant leaks from the fire sprinkler heads can be a reflection of damaged seals, corrosion within the pipes, or even that the system was installed incorrectly.

An ongoing leak should be treated as a serious issue. If basic maintenance efforts, like tightening the sprinkler head seals, do not fix the problem, it could require professional service.

Signs of Corrosion

An old rusty fire sprinkler

If you notice signs of corrosion, like the color of rust around the sprinkler heads, it is a sign that a professional should assess your fire sprinkler system.

While the sprinkler heads can corrode over time, visible signs of rust and corrosion usually indicate damaged or corroded pipes. This can lead to a pipe burst or complete blockage of the water supply, rendering the entire fire sprinkler system ineffective in the event of a fire.

Inconsistent Water Pressure

If you test your sprinkler heads and notice inconsistent water pressure or that certain heads measure less pressure than others, it could be a sign of a blockage in the water supply system. While this may seem minor, it can make the fire suppression system less capable of handling a fire emergency. 

Visibly Damaged Fire Sprinkler Heads

Naturally, if you can see that one or more fire sprinkler heads are damaged, they should be repaired or replaced. Even small cracks or dents could prevent the sprinkler head from spreading water correctly.

This tends to occur in high-traffic industrial facilities, like warehouses and factories. If this type of damage occurs regularly, you may want to learn how fire sprinkler head guards work.

What Can Happen if You Ignore Damage to a Fire Sprinkler System?

Now that you know more about the common signs of damage and when you should call for repairs, we can discuss some consequences of ignoring damages to a fire sprinkler system.

For starters, neglecting fire sprinkler repairs reduces the effectiveness of the entire system. Fire sprinkler systems are designed to provide complete fire suppression coverage to the interior of a building. If damaged, the system will not offer the same degree of coverage, increasing the risk of the fire spreading.

Serious damages could even cause a fire sprinkler system to fail completely. Not only would this risk lives and significant property damage, the discovery of neglected repairs could result in serious legal consequences or voided insurance coverage.

Finally, a damaged and neglected fire sprinkler system can result in severe and expensive water damage to the property. While small leaks may seem manageable, they can eventually lead to full-blown flooding issues. While it may surprise you, water damage can be just as financially costly as the damage caused by a fire! 

When Should You Call for Professional Fire Sprinkler Repair Services? 

Fire sprinkler repair team

If you notice any visible signs of damage we covered before, like leaks, cracked sprinkler heads, or rust, you should immediately contact a fire sprinkler repair service.

You should also immediately call for repairs if your fire sprinkler system has been activated without reason. Misfires can indicate that your fire sprinkler system is not functioning as it should, so it may not be reliable in a real fire.

You should also schedule an assessment and inspection after your sprinkler system has been activated following a fire. This will ensure that the system was activated correctly and that the fire did not damage the fire sprinklers. The heat-sensitive filaments in the activated sprinkler heads will also need to be replaced.

What to Do if Your Fire Sprinklers Are Activated Accidentally?

As discussed, you should call for repairs from a certified technician if your fire sprinklers misfire. While this is important in the aftermath of the incident, it will do little to prevent water damage in the moment.

Even if your fire sprinkler system worked successfully by detecting and suppressing a fire, it can continue to expel water, which can cause serious water damage to your property.

Fortunately, there is a simple and affordable solution to this costly issue. The Shutgun is an indispensable, hand-held tool that can quickly and easily shut off an activated fire sprinkler. Its one-hand design even means it can be safely operated from a ladder.

steps to shut off fire sprinklers using shutgun water sprinkler shut off tool

Given that a single fire sprinkler head can release 60 gallons of water per minute, significant and costly water damage can occur every second you wait. Rather than wait for the fire department to arrive and deactivate your fire sprinkler system for you, give yourself the ability to act and prevent tens of thousands of dollars in water damage! 

To learn more and order your own, click the link below:

Get My Shutgun

Final Words

It can’t be stated enough how effective a well-maintained fire sprinkler system can protect lives and property during a large-scale fire. By knowing how to recognize damages to your fire sprinkler system, you will be ready to make timely repairs.

Remember, regular fire sprinkler maintenance and repairs are necessary if you want to be able to rely on your automatic fire sprinkler system. You should always contact a certified fire sprinkler technician if you ever need repairs. When it comes to fires, it is always better to be over-prepared than underprepared! 

You can also access our FAQs about fire sprinkler systems if you want to know more.

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