It can take firefighters up to 15 minutes to get to a fire. By that time a room or house can be fully ablaze. A home sprinkler will protect your family and home from the dangers of fire, 24 hours a day.
Every three hours a home burns in New Zealand. Each year on average 19 people lose their lives in a house fire and over $141 million damage was caused.
But the emotional and financial devastation caused by fire doesn’t have to happen. Installing a home sprinkler when you’re at the framing stage of your new home is the most cost effective way of protecting the things you value the most. But, increasingly, installing sprinklers into existing homes (retro-fitting) is becoming a viable alternative. They don’t even need to connect to your council’s water supply.
Home sprinklers can be connected to either a local authority domestic water connection (street mains) or to a storage tank and pump system.
If you don’t have town water supply or you’re rebuilding, or doing a major renovation, on an existing property we would recommend the pump and tank system. If you’re building in a subdivision, connecting to the water mains may be the way to go. All piping is concealed.
DISPELLING THE MYTHS ABOUT SPRINKLERS
Despite being erroneously commonly portrayed in films and TV as creating havoc, domestic and residential sprinklers are becoming the fire suppression system of choice for many housing providers including Housing Associations, Care Home operators, landlords and home owners.
There is an increasing body of evidence from around the world of fires being controlled and extinguished by sprinklers.
Some of the common myths about sprinklers that are totally false are:
Myth 1: They all go off at once
Not true. Only the sprinkler nearest to the fire goes off, with research from the United States showing that 90% of all fires in buildings where sprinklers are installed, are extinguished by one sprinkler head only.
Myth 2: Smoke sets a sprinkler head off so they will go off every time you burn the toast
Not True. Sprinklers respond to heat not smoke. In a domestic situation it would require a temperature of 68°C to operate a sprinkler head.
Myth 3: Sprinklers will go off by accident without warning
Not True. There is a 16 million to 1 chance of a sprinkler going off as a result of a manufacturing defect. You have a better chance of winning the lottery!
Myth 4: They cause more water damage than the Fire Service
Not True. The water from fire-fighting hoses will use on average some 20 times more water than the early activation of a sprinkler head, as the fire is contained by the sprinkler system and prevents it from spreading throughout the building.
Myth 5: They are unsightly and easily damaged
Not True. Sprinkler heads can now be concealed behind a plain disk in the ceiling. Most occupants of modern sprinklered buildings do not even know they have a system fitted. This can also mean that they are less prone to damage.
Myth 6: They are costly
Not True. Sprinklers can be installed for around 1 to 1½% of the total cost of a building, sometimes less expensive than that. The inclusion of sprinkler system at an early stage can offer other savings through design freedoms. A low cost system can be retro-fitted in risk rooms only eg kitchens and living rooms, for as little as $1500. In an average sized house the cost of fitting a good quality carpet can be more expensive that fitting a full sprinkler system.
Credit: Dorset Fire