Fire sprinkler systems are often the first line of defense in the event of a fire—but only if they are working properly. To ensure that fire sprinkler systems are functional and up to code, it’s crucial that you follow regular testing, inspection, and maintenance schedule. What should that schedule be? Here’s how often fire sprinkler systems should be tested, inspected, and maintained.
There isn’t just one simple answer like “once per year” for when you need to test your fire sprinkler system. There are many different components to a fire sprinkler system, each with its own testing schedule. According to the Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems, NFPA 25, physical testing must be done:
Fire Sprinkler Component
|Sprinkler mechanical devices||Quarterly|
|Vane and pressure switch devices||Semiannually|
|Complete fire sprinkler system test, including low flow tests, alarm tests, trip tests, deluge, preaction valves, antifreeze concentration tests, and fire pump tests||Annually|
|Sprinklers exposed to extra-high temps and harsh environments (Test or Replace)||Every 5 years|
|Gauges (Test or Replace)||Every 5 years|
|Dry sprinklers (Test or Replace)||Every 10 years|
|Fast-response sprinklers (Test or Replace)||20 years initially, then every 10 years|
|Standard response sprinklers (Test or Replace)||50 years initially, then every 10 years|
Per NFPA, the inspection schedule for fire sprinkler systems is as follows:
Fire Sprinkler Component
|Gauges (dry, pre-action, and deluge systems)||Weekly|
|Gauges (wet pipe systems)||Quarterly|
|Waterflow alarm devices, supervisory signal devices, hydraulic nameplates, valves supervisory alarm devices, and control valves||Quarterly|
|Pipes and fittings, hanger/seismic bracing, spare sprinklers, and information signage||Annually|
|Internal inspection of sprinkler piping||Every 5 years|
If you keep up on the testing and inspection schedule, maintenance is easy. Any time a component fails inspection or testing, it’s time to repair or replace it. Additionally, if components are showing signs of rust, corrosion, or wear, you can note that during your testing and inspection process and replace them. A reputable testing and inspection company will know NFPA 25 and be able to perform all necessary maintenance on the required schedule to ensure compliance.
Time to have your fire sprinkler system tested? The experts at Vanguard Fire and Security would love to help. A full-service fire protection agency, we test, inspect, and service a variety of fire sprinkler and fire protection systems, and we’d be happy to help make sure yours is working and is code compliant. Our experts are waiting to help!