Comparing Residential and Commercial Fire Sprinkler Systems

What type of fire protection do you need? Understanding the key differences between residential and commercial fire sprinkler systems will help you make the right choice for your building, property, and the people who use it. Each application is different and requires a solution tailored to specific needs. This blog post will help you understand these and other differences between residential and commercial fire sprinkler systems so you can make the best choice and provide maximum safety and protection.

Factors to Consider in Commercial Fire Sprinkler Systems

Scale and Complexity

The first factor to consider when comparing residential and commercial fire sprinkler systems is the scale and complexity of the project. How much square footage is involved and how the space is used will have a huge impact on your decision. Generally, commercial spaces require more advanced systems to handle the needs of larger spaces, more people, combustible materials, and intricate building structures. Commercial buildings are often large and complex, which presents unique challenges when planning commercial fire sprinkler systems. Different types of commercial fire sprinkler systems exist for different needs, including wet pipe, dry pipe, deluge, and pre-action.

Residential applications are typically smaller and require simple systems involving a water supply, pipes, and sprinkler heads. On the other hand, a residential property will never have as much water available as a commercial one and residential sprinkler heads are designed to be triggered at an earlier stage of a fire. When comparing systems, consider how the scale and complexity of your project may affect the choice and layout of fire safety systems. If your project is large or has specialized and complex needs, you will want professionals to design and install a commercial fire sprinkler system.

Occupancy and Use

Commercial spaces have diverse uses, including manufacturing, retail, storage, and office space. Each use comes with unique fire hazards, requiring specific protection measures to mitigate the risk. Installing sprinkler systems is one of the most critical components of fire protection for commercial properties. These systems are designed to deliver water to a fire in its early stages, suppressing it before it spreads and causing significant damage. A comprehensive fire protection strategy for commercial spaces must include other measures such as smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, and emergency exit plans.

On the other hand, homes are primarily used for residential purposes, and the focus of fire protection extends beyond protecting lives to safeguarding property. While the loss of life is always a top priority, fire damage in homes can also result in significant financial losses, the loss of personal belongings, and emotional distress. Residential fire protection measures typically include smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, and escape plans. Additionally, homes should have proper electrical wiring and appliances, as these are common causes of residential fires. Overall, while the risks and protection measures differ between commercial and residential spaces, both require a comprehensive approach to fire protection to ensure the safety of occupants and limit damage in case of a fire.

Codes and Regulations for Commercial Fire Sprinkler Systems

Residential fire protection often differs from commercial setups, primarily because home fire sprinkler systems aren’t mandated by law in many areas. Although not obligatory for homeowners, domestic fire sprinklers offer significant advantages. They provide crucial fire protection and can swiftly address fires at their inception, offering invaluable peace of mind. Many homeowners opt to install these systems to safeguard their property and loved ones, and they may even enjoy reduced insurance premiums as a result.

On the other hand, commercial properties must have fire sprinkler systems installed as per legal requirements. While some homeowners proactively install sprinklers, commercial entities are mandated to do so. Beyond regulatory compliance, the presence of fire sprinkler systems in commercial settings can lead to lower insurance costs and heightened safety measures. Navigating the intricate landscape of building codes and regulations related to fire protection, particularly concerning sprinkler systems, is imperative. Adhering to these regulations ensures proper installation and maintenance, which are essential for effective fire hazard mitigation. Disregarding these guidelines could result in severe consequences, including security risks, legal liabilities, and property damage, underscoring the critical importance of prioritizing fire safety measures in both residential and commercial settings.


NFPA 13 Sprinkler Systems Installation CodesNFPA is a leading organization in fire protection and provides several codes and standards for fire protection systems. Some of the most relevant codes for commercial fire protection include NFPA 13 (Sprinkler Systems), NFPA 14 (Standpipes and Hose Systems), and NFPA 72 (Fire Alarm and Signaling Systems).

NFPA 13, the Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems, contains relevant information for commercial fire sprinkler systems, including the following guidelines:

All new commercial structures with a fire area of more than 5,000 square feet must have automatic fire sprinkler systems installed.

Any remodeling or expansion that extends the fire area beyond 5,000 square feet, or any single tenant increase in occupancy requiring a new certificate of occupancy, will require sprinkler systems to be installed throughout the building.

Buildings more than 55 feet tall must have automatic sprinkler systems installed in all of the structures.

Sprinkler systems are required in townhomes with more than two residential occupancy units within a structure.

Other Codes and Requirements

Local codes and regulations, alongside national codes, play a crucial role in ensuring the compliance of fire protection systems. Building owners and managers should collaborate with fire protection specialists to guarantee adherence to these standards. Moreover, securing approval from the fire department before installation is essential, and close coordination with them is necessary to meet all requirements.

The standards and requirements for residential fire sprinkler systems can be found in NFPA 13D.

Additional Considerations for Commercial Applications

In addition to commercial fire sprinkler systems, you may need to consider other elements of a fire protection system in commercial buildings. Your commercial fire sprinkler system may not be enough to meet code requirements or to keep your property safe. Consider integrating an alarm system and a suppression system.

Alarm Systems

Another important element to consider when planning your commercial fire sprinkler system is your fire alarm and detection systems. These are uniquely designed systems that include interlinked elements and a central control panel. Integrating an alarm and detection system in your commercial space is indispensable for early intervention. From smoke detectors to carbon monoxide detectors, these devices are critical in spotting and warning residents of possible threats. It is necessary to ensure that these systems are installed, maintained, and tested regularly to ensure their effectiveness. Many commercial alarm systems include 24/7 alarm monitoring.

Fire Suppression

In commercial and industrial environments, while wet sprinkler systems offer reliability, certain scenarios demand alternatives to water. Some settings, like data centers, restaurants, and museums, require specialized fire suppression systems beyond traditional sprinklers. These systems utilize agents other than water for enhanced protection against fire hazards. Fire suppression systems, often paired with detection systems, offer rapid response capabilities. Especially in high-risk environments, such as hazardous applications, swift action is crucial to contain fires promptly and minimize potential losses and damages.

A Trusted Partner to Install Your Commercial Fire Sprinkler System

At Western States Fire Protection Co. (WSFP), we’re here to be your trusted partner in fire safety. With over three decades of experience and a commitment to excellence, we offer unparalleled quality in fire protection systems and solutions. Our team has over 35 years of experience in the design, installation, inspection, repair, and service of fire protection systems. We can provide the design for your fire alarm system, fire alarm monitoring, detection, suppression, and commercial fire sprinkler systems, as well as provide installation, testing, service, and inspections of your systems.

How to Pass a Fire Inspection

There may not be a one-size-fits-all approach for how to pass a fire inspection; however, there are guidelines, regulations, and laws that you should be aware of. There are several factors a business must keep in mind to pass an inspection. These include industry type, building size and usage, building maximum occupancy, and much more. It is important to understand the protection needs of your business prior to an inspection. 

As every business and industry is different, you might consider contacting your local fire authorities and code enforcement office to gain a better idea of what your industrial space needs. There are many resources available online to provide you with information on how to safely and confidently manage your industrial fire protection. A credible fire protection company may also be a great resource for finding out the specific needs of your protection system before your inspection. Whatever you decide, be sure to properly prepare to pass an industrial fire inspection.

What to Consider Before an Industrial Fire Protection Inspection

Readying your business for a fire protection inspection may take more time than anticipated, depending on the condition of your fire protection system. If any equipment parts need cleaning, replacement, or testing, it could be beneficial to get a head start on your preparations. Keep an eye out for any updates to codes or laws in your area that pertain to fire protection, even if you have passed prior inspections. As agencies conduct research and technology changes, updates may be made to important requirements that could impact how to pass a fire inspection. A thorough review of requirements and regulations before an inspection may save you from not being fully prepared. Additionally, you may find it helpful to contact your business’s insurance provider to get a list of requirements for your policy. 

How to Prepare for and Pass an Industrial Fire Inspection

As you prepare for an inspection of your industrial fire protection system, you may want to take a look at the following: NFPA

  • Hazardous materials: While there is a wide range of hazardous industrial materials, it is important to know what is being used or stored in your facility so you can take safety measures in case of a fire. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), many types of listed hazardous materials may require special protection or storage conditions. Identifying these risks can help you properly prepare your facility for inspections and use. 
  • Have certified professionals conduct a system overview: This can include alarm and detection testing and cleanings to prepare your system for proper operation. Consider contacting a trained fire protection company to conduct a system overview before your inspection, as they may be able to spot complications within your system. 
  • Have repairs completed by certified professionals: Like many things, fire protection systems may require occasional repair. Components like internal piping can corrode over time, and it is recommended to have them inspected every five years (per NFPA-25 standards). General repairs may need to be made as well, so regular system maintenance may help keep your system ready for inspection. 

Maintaining Your Industrial Fire Protection System

After an initial fire protection system inspection, you will find it important to have regular maintenance of your fire protection systems to potentially mitigate any repairs or system complications that can arise. The NFPA reported that non-residential structure fires rose 12% from 2021 to 2022 and, in 2022, caused an estimated $4.0 billion in direct property damage. To reduce the risk to your property and to make sure that your system is ready, consider regular system maintenance from a trained and certified provider. 

As you prepare your business for an industrial fire protection inspection and evaluate your needs, consider adding your local Western States Fire Protection team to help prepare your facility. Use this form to get in contact with us today so we can help you discover how to pass a fire inspection successfully. 


Cooking Up Safety: A Guide to Preventing Holiday Kitchen Fires

Protecting Your Home from Holiday Fires

With the holidays quickly approaching, you may find yourself having an increase in gatherings, cooking, and time spent indoors. Because your home is an essential part of your life, being cautious and vigilant for any fire dangers is a significant factor in protecting your home from holiday fires. Holiday fire safety is just one part of protecting your home; however, adopting some principles from our guide into your everyday life could be an opportunity to make your home a safer place all year round.

Home Fire Protection Considerations

Your home provides shelter for your family, pets, and possessions and is worth protecting from fires. During the holiday season, you may be looking to build up your home’s fire protection. While considering your home’s fire protection, there are a few things you may want to keep in mind, like the size of your residence, budget, and home safety requirements. You may also want to consider the risks you have in your home, including electrical systems, appliances, heating systems, and more, to get an idea of what hazards are in your home and where to begin preparing for holiday fire protection.

A Guide to Kitchen Fire Safety This Holiday SeasonPreventing holiday fires in the kitchen

Holiday celebrations may start in the kitchen with delicious appetizers, main courses, and delightful desserts. With so many options for food creation come many opportunities for kitchen fires. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), from 2017 to 2021, cooking accounted for 44 percent of all reported home fires in the U.S. and was the leading cause of reported home fires and home fire injuries.

Reducing your risk of a fire caused by cooking can include being vigilant and removing flammable items from your heated appliances, such as fabrics (like kitchen towels), food packaging, and oils. Remembering to turn off your range and oven and never leaving your cooking unattended are important kitchen safety procedures as well. Having a fire extinguisher in an accessible area in your kitchen is a simple and fairly inexpensive way to increase your fire protection. Your kitchen’s fire safety is invaluable throughout the year; however, with gatherings, it may be worth considering implementing comprehensive safety precautions.

Hazards Aren’t Just in the Kitchen

Aside from your kitchen fire safety, it may also be worth further considering more general holiday fire hazards. No matter what your holiday decor entails, we have compiled some quick tips for potentially reducing your risk of a fire this holiday season:

  • If you opt for fresh garland or a fresh Christmas tree, it is incredibly important to keep your tree watered and healthy and all of your greenery away from any fireplaces or flames like candles. Dry pine trees can ignite and become engulfed in flames in under a minute, according to this publication by PBS.
  • Make sure any lights you use, or plugin are in proper working order. Do not use lights in outlets that cannot accommodate their wattage or cords, as well as lights that have frayed or stripped cords or broken or missing bulbs.
  • It is important to never leave candles unattended or burning for too long.
  • Fireplaces should be extinguished properly after each use and never left alone or unattended.
  • If you use a portable heat source like space heaters, make sure they are turned off and unplugged after each use. Refer to your owner’s manual for more safety tips and appliance use procedures.

Finding Your Residential Fire Sprinkler System

As you look forward to gathering with your loved ones, beginning to upgrade, install, or maintain your residential fire sprinkler system can be a fantastic approach to aiming to protect your home this holiday season. Western States Fire Protection is proud to offer services in retrofitting and installing systems for existing and new construction homes. WSFP residential systems are smaller and more inconspicuous than commercial-grade sprinkler systems and are also available in color options to be more aesthetically pleasing in your home. With so many benefits to whole home fire protection systems, now is the time to contact us to learn about how WSFP can help protect your home this holiday season!

Preparing for Winter Fire Safety

Winter is Coming!

As the seasons change and operations and people are predominantly indoors, protecting your space in the colder months may be more important than ever. From using various heat sources or processes such as boilers, furnaces, and even smaller heating appliances like space heaters, to storage of combustible equipment and materials, many components can increase the risk of a fire. Follow along as we explore some tips for winter fire safety.

Important Winter Fire Safety Tips

Keeping your buildings, whether they are residential, commercial, or industrial, and people safe in the winter can be challenging and require attention to many details.

Here are some quick winter fire safety tips that may help keep your spaces protected:

  • Do not leave fires of any kind unattended.
  • Test and inspect your fire protection systems including extinguishers, alarms, and alert systems.
  • Consider having a certified professional clean out and clear vents of any obstructions i.e. debris, dust, and more.
  • Turn off and unplug supplemental heating appliances like space heaters when not in use.
  • Service your fire pump before winter.
  • Explore the installation of carbon monoxide (CO) detection devices that adhere to local safety codes and laws.

Your Winter Fire Safety Checklist

With many variables, it can be difficult to keep track of all the winter fire safety details. While every setting varies in its fire protection system requirements, there may be a few key practices that you can incorporate into your winter fire safety checklist to potentially keep your space safe. Below are some practices to consider for the upcoming cold season:

  • Have a clear emergency exit plan in case of an emergency.
  • Regularly inspect and maintain fire protection systems including alarms, sprinklers, suppression systems, and monitoring services.
  • Ensure fire safety systems adhere to your local fire codes, laws, and regulations.
  • Make repairs to fire protection systems as needed.
  • Remain vigilant for any processes or machinery that could possibly contribute to a higher risk of a fire. According to this report by the National Fire Protection Association, between 2017-2021, there were 3,396 reported structure fires, with welding torches being ranked first as a factor.
  • Do not overload electrical outlets or exceed their voltage capacity.
Frozen Fire Sprinkler Pipe
Frozen Fire Sprinkler Pipe

Choosing the Right Fire Protection Service

Serving residential, commercial, and industrial facilities, our team at Western States Fire Protection (WSFP) is ready to help you prepare your facilities for winter. With many possible dangers with the potential to increase the risk of a fire in your facility, it is important to be prepared before the cold weather and winter storms begin. Choosing the right fire protection service can depend on location, need, and complexity, however, it is important to select a qualified agency and one that you trust.

At WSFP, we work to provide you with quality fire protection systems and solutions. With locations across the United States, we are available to provide a range of clients with assistance in preparing for winter. Contact our team today and connect to one of our experts to learn more.

Fire Protection Installation

Invest in Fire Safety this Winter!

For business owners and property managers, the winter season presents unique challenges when it comes to fire safety. As the weather turns colder and more people gather indoors, it becomes crucial to prioritize the safety of your space. The tips and checklist provided in this guide offer essential strategies to minimize the risk of fire incidents during the winter months. By being proactive in maintaining fire protection systems, adhering to local safety codes, and addressing potential fire hazards, you can create a safer environment for your occupants and protect your valuable assets. Remember, investing in winter fire safety not only preserves your property but also ensures the well-being of everyone inside it.

Fire Prevention in the Workplace: Comprehensive Training for Employees

Prepare Your Employees with Workplace Fire Safety Training

Safety in the workplace is an integral part of any responsible business operation, and fire safety is an aspect that must never be neglected.  Employers have the solemn duty to ensure the safety of their employees, and this includes preparing them thoroughly for unexpected fire emergencies. Fires can break out suddenly and without warning, inflicting chaos in a workplace and posing grave risks to people and property. To mitigate these risks, it is essential to provide employees with comprehensive workplace fire safety training, equipping them with the knowledge and skills necessary to respond effectively in the event of a fire.

The Significance of Fire Safety Training for Businesses

Office fire safety training ensures that employees can prevent, detect, and respond to fire emergencies. In addition to saving lives, fire protection training reduces the likelihood of property damage and business disruption, ultimately resulting in higher safety and the protection of lives. Employees who have received thorough training in fire safety are better equipped to handle emergencies, thereby reducing distress and confusion during a crisis. Additionally, they are more likely to use fire extinguishers effectively, thereby mitigating fire damage.

Protecting Life

Obviously, the primary objective of fire safety training is to save lives. Fires can be catastrophic, swiftly spreading and trapping people in confined spaces. Without appropriate training, confusion and panic can result in tragic outcomes. Training in fire safety equips employees with the self-assurance to act promptly and decisively in an emergency, potentially saving lives.

Property loss due to fire - fire safety at work

Legal Obligations

In most jurisdictions, workplace safety is mandated by law. In the event of an incident, failing to provide adequate fire safety training can result in severe penalties, including fines and legal liability. Employers meet their legal responsibilities and establish a safer work environment by providing regular fire safety training.

Reduce Property Losses

In addition to endangering lives, fires can cause extensive property and asset damage. Rebuilding and replacing equipment can be financially ruinous for an organization. Through comprehensive fire safety training, employees are able to recognize potential fire hazards, implement fire prevention measures, and use fire extinguishing apparatus effectively, thereby minimizing property damage.

Aspects of Workplace Fire Safety Training

There are many parts to cover when you are considering adding or enhancing your workplace fire safety training. Each is important, so a thorough understanding of the part they play will make for a more complete and effective strategy.

Familiarization with Fire Safety Equipment

Employees can learn about fire safety equipment such as fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems, and fire alarms through business fire safety training. They are taught how to operate these devices properly and when to use them, thereby enhancing their ability to combat minor fires before they spread.

Fire Prevention Education

Fire safety training begins with education on fire prevention. Employees learn how to identify potential fire hazards such as faulty wiring, flammable materials, and improper storage of chemicals. By understanding these risks, individuals can take proactive measures to prevent fires from occurring in the first place.

Emergency Response 

In the event of a fire, prompt and effective action is essential. The fire safety training includes practical exercises on safely evacuating a building, employing fire extinguishers, and implementing fire alarm procedures. This hands-on training ensures that employees will be able to effectively respond to a fire emergency, as well as when the current situation is beyond management and evacuation is the best option.

16,500 Annual Office Fires - How many office fires per year?

The Benefits of Workplace Fire Safety Training

Fire safety training is not merely another item on your workplace safety checklist; it is an investment that can pay off in terms of employee health, property protection, and legal compliance. When you consider that 0.22% of deaths in the world are due to fire, with 3,170 deaths each year in the US alone, according to recent research, as shared by Gitnux. When digging deeper into workplace-related fires, FEMA states that 16,500 fires occur annually in offices and business locations.

Improved Worker Safety


Fire safety training equips employees with the necessary knowledge and skills to respond effectively in the event of a fire emergency. This includes knowledge of fire hazards, evacuation procedures, and the proper use of fire extinguishers.


Trained employees are less likely to despair in the event of a fire because they know how to navigate escape routes and use firefighting equipment. This reduces the likelihood of injuries and deaths.

Confidence and Morale

Fire Extinguisher Safety Training - fire prevention in the workplace

Employee Confidence

The knowledge that they have the ability to respond to a fire emergency can increase employees’ confidence in their workplace, fostering a sense of safety.

Positive Workplace Environment

Training employees to prioritize safety fosters a culture of care and responsibility, resulting in improved morale and collaboration.

Readiness for Emergency Situations

Multi-Hazard Training

Frequently, fire safety training includes elements of emergency preparedness that can be useful in situations other than fires.


Fire safety training can equip employees with the problem-solving and decision-making skills necessary to respond effectively to unforeseen emergencies of various types.

Essential Life Skills

Lifelong Learning

Training in fire safety is not limited to the workplace; it equips individuals with skills they can implement in their personal lives, making them more safety-conscious in their homes and communities.

Shareable Experience

Trained employees can potentially save lives by sharing their knowledge with peers and family outside of the workplace.

Beginning Your Workplace Fire Safety Training

Workplace Fire Safety Training Instructor - fire safety in the workplace

While there is plenty to worry about in any business, workplace fire safety training should certainly be taken into consideration and planned for. Office fire safety training is not just a regulatory requirement; it is a strategic investment that can protect lives, assets, and the reputation of your organization. By enhancing employee safety, minimizing property damage, ensuring legal compliance, and cultivating a culture of preparedness, businesses can derive numerous benefits from this essential fire safety training. Being prepared for emergencies is a responsibility that cannot be exaggerated in an unpredictable world.

In your efforts to begin this journey, allow the specialists at Western States Fire Protection the opportunity to guide you through the proper steps and ensure you have considered all aspects. As an industry-leading fire protection company, WSFP has the experience and resources to help you prepare for business fire safety training. Talk with our team today to get started! 

Western States Fire Protection Earns Highwire’s Prestigious Platinum Safety Award

Highwire, a cutting-edge cloud-based mobile platform dedicated to risk management, has just unveiled the esteemed recipients of its highly coveted safety award, and Western States Fire Protection has emerged a winner.

This triumph comes on the heels of WSFP registering an outstanding safety score that eclipsed 95%, earning the prestigious “Platinum Status” within Highwire’s esteemed Safety Assessment Program. To put it succinctly, achieving Platinum status is no ordinary accomplishment; it represents the pinnacle of safety excellence.

“Platinum status is not easily achieved. Western States Fire Protection has demonstrated a remarkable commitment to implementing safety management systems resulting in exceptionally low incident rates,” states Garrett Burke, CEO of Highwire.

The Unique Approach of Highwire’s Safety Assessment Program

This award highlights WSFP’s unwavering dedication to implementing robust safety management systems that have yielded an exceptionally low incident rate. Platinum status is a recognition that goes beyond accolades. It serves as a testament to Western States Fire Protection’s steadfast commitment to safeguarding lives and property.

The Safety Assessment Program, a cornerstone of Highwire’s commitment to safety, delves into a comprehensive analysis of a company’s historical safety performance and the effectiveness of its current safety management systems. What sets this program apart is its ability to normalize data, considering the unique attributes of vendors or contractors, such as their size and the nature of the work they perform.

This program offers a multifaceted evaluation that is thorough, objective, and consistent, making it an indispensable tool for clients seeking to make informed decisions about risk management. It empowers clients to identify, monitor, and manage risk with unparalleled insight and precision. Moreover, the results obtained through this program serve as a robust indicator of a vendor or contractor’s commitment to safety, offering a reliable predictive glimpse into their future performance.

To check out WSFP’s Highwire page click here.

Transitioning from NOVEC 1230 to FK-5-1-12: What You Need to Know

Championing Sustainable Solutions – Your Path to Cleaner Fire Protection

In today’s rapidly evolving world, safeguarding businesses, and industries with sensitive products from the devastating impact of fires has never been more critical. For years, NOVEC 1230 has been the go-to clean agent, cherished for its remarkable fire-extinguishing capabilities without causing water damage or leaving harmful residues. However, recent environmental regulations have signaled the need for change. While NOVEC 1230 is classified as a polyfluoroalkyl substance (PFAS), which is safe to make and use while possessing little-to-no global warming potential, constant changes in federal regulation (such as the AIM Act) have made 3M weary of continuing production.

As the fire protection industry undergoes a transformative phase, we bid adieu to NOVEC 1230, a hydrocarbon (HC) clean agent that has served us well for many years. While the phrase “bid adieu” may seem reminiscent of a sad farewell, it is crucial to recognize that this shift does not mean there are not equal clean agent suppressors out there. As we close one chapter, we open another, venturing into the realm of alternative suppression solutions.

At Western States Fire Protection, we provide you with the latest information and guiding you toward the best solutions. Let’s embark on a journey to explore the AIM Act, understand the future of NOVEC, and discover the promising alternative, FK-5-1-12.

Understanding the AIM Act and its Objectives

One of the primary objectives of the AIM Act is to phase down the production and consumption of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) – a group of potent greenhouse gases commonly used in various applications, including fire suppression agents like HFC-227. HFCs have a high global warming potential, thousands of times more potent than carbon dioxide in terms of heat-trapping ability, making them a contributor to climate change.

To address this critical environmental issue, the AIM Act directs the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish a gradual phase-down schedule for HFCs. The act mandates the transition to more environmentally friendly alternatives with significantly lower global warming potential, fostering a sustainable approach to fire protection without compromising on safety and efficacy.

By phasing out HFCs and promoting environmentally friendly alternatives, the AIM Act aims to mitigate global warming and protect the delicate ecological balance. This legislation serves as a collective effort to foster technological advancements that drive us toward a cleaner and more sustainable world.

AIM Act HFC Phase Down Schedule per the EPA

Impact on Existing Systems

If you are a business owner with an existing NOVEC 1230 fire suppression system, you might wonder about its future. Rest assured that the AIM Act does not actually affect the production or distribution of NOVEC 1230 clean agent systems, so any pre-existing systems may continue to run indefinitely. So, this begs the question, why is it being discontinued?

3M said in a statement that due to “the evolving external landscape, including multiple factors such as accelerating regulatory trends [AIM Act] focused on reducing or eliminating the presence of PFAS in the environment and changing stakeholder expectations.” Given the direction federal and industry standards are heading, 3M looks to be proactive in production and looks to innovate more sustainable solutions in the future rather than succumbing to more regulations down the road. This unfortunately means there is a discontinuation timeline of 2025 (and industry experts believe that 3M will run out even sooner than that).

“While PFAS can be safely made and used, we also see an opportunity to lead in a rapidly evolving external regulatory and business landscape to make the greatest impact for those we serve. This action is another example of how we are positioning 3M for continued sustainable growth by optimizing our portfolio, innovating for our customers, and delivering long-term value for our shareholders,” says 3M CEO Mike Roman.

While as a clean agent is still allowed on the market, it’s essential to plan proactively for the future, as the availability of NOVEC will eventually diminish. This foresight empowers you to transition seamlessly to an alternative clean agent, and our experts at Western States Fire Protection are ready to help you understand the best next steps for your unique requirements.

Exploring the Alternatives: FK-5-1-12

Amidst the pressure ushered in by the AIM Act, businesses are tasked with exploring alternative clean agents that match the performance of NOVEC. Among these alternatives, one standout solution is FK-5-1-12, an advanced fire suppressant offered by nearly all fire protection manufacturers.

FK-5-1-12 bears the same chemical nomenclature while primarily differing in name alone. The main distinction lies solely in branding. This means that FK-5-1-12 inherits the environmentally friendly qualities and safe/secure storage attributes synonymous with its 3M counterpart. Given the 3M’s ongoing phaseout, it is logical to infer that FK-5-1-12 will seamlessly take its place.

NOVEC 1320 vs. FK-5-1-12 Molecular Composition

Embracing the Future of Responsible Fire Safety

As the sun sets on the era of NOVEC 1230, we rise to embrace industry alternatives. The AIM Act, although posing challenges, catalyzes innovation, propelling us towards environmental sustainability. With a united effort, businesses can continue to safeguard their critical assets while actively contributing to the preservation of our planet. Our experts at Western States Fire Protection are ready to guide you through this transition, ensuring your business remains safe, compliant, and at the forefront of environmentally responsible fire protection solutions. Contact us today and let us join hands on this journey to a sustainable and secure future.

Fire Sprinkler Backflow Valves: Types and Inspections

What is a Fire Sprinkler Backflow?

Backflow is when water flows in the opposite direction it is supposed to because of an imbalance in pressure. When there is a backflow in fire sprinklers, the water moves toward the water supply rather than the sprinkler head. It is important to prevent this because backflow can contaminate the public water supply causing health hazards as well as compromising the performance of the sprinkler.

What are Backflow Preventers?

Fire sprinkler backflow preventers, or sprinkler backflow valves, are devices used in the sprinkler line that prevents the water from flowing in the wrong direction. Fire system backflow preventers act as barriers, directing the water only toward the fire protection system and restricting it from reversing into the public water supply. Two common backflow preventer types include: 

  1. Double-check valves: A Double Check Valve Assembly consists of two check valves and a shut-off valve between them. This creates a layer of protection and is low hazard fire application.
  2. Reduced pressure zone (RPZ): RPZ assemblies provide more protection for high-hazard applications. They have two check valves and a relief valve in between, creating a zone with reduced pressure to prevent backflow.

Legal Requirements for Commercial Application Inspections

Frequency of Inspections: According to NFPA 25, the frequency of sprinkler backflow valves may vary depending on their type and size. However backflow preventers should be inspected on an annual basis at a minimum and visually inspected on a weekly to monthly basis.

Testing: Backflow preventers are also required to be tested regularly to ensure their proper functioning. The testing frequency may vary based on the specific type and size of the backflow preventer. There are various types of tests that are required to be done, two of these tests are:

  1. Forward Flow Test – The forward flow test checks the ability of the backflow preventer to allow water to flow in the correct direction. The valves and components of the backflow preventer are checked to ensure they open and close correctly during the test. The test should be done at a designated flow rate and conducted according to NFPA standards. This test examines whether the system can get enough water supply in a fire condition.
  2. Backflow Performance Test – This test checks the performance of your backflow prevention devices to make sure that the water supply is protected from cross-contamination. The test is performed by sending higher-pressure water downstream of the backflow preventer to confirm if the device can prevent the reverse flow effectively.

Record Keeping: It is required that there are up-to-date records of all inspections, testing, and maintenance performed on backflow preventers. These records should be kept on file and made available for review by fire inspectors or authorities upon request.

Qualified Personnel: The inspection, testing, and maintenance of sprinkler backflow valves should be conducted by qualified and certified professionals with experience in backflow prevention systems.

Backflow Preventer Inspections with WSFP

At WSFP we conduct backflow preventer inspections that follow NFPA standards, local codes, and state regulations. Our team of experts will provide scheduled fire protection inspections that assess the operational condition of your system. Inspections can be scheduled on a weekly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or annual basis depending on your specific sprinkler needs. Contact us today to learn more about our backflow preventer inspections.

Disturbed’s Fiery Performance Turns into a Water Show Thanks to a WSFP Sprinkler System!

The Legend of Disturbed

Gather ’round rockers! We’ve got a story that’ll make you chuckle. It’s about one of our favorite metal bands, Disturbed, and how their pyrotechnics got them into a bit of a “slippery” situation during their Take Back Your Life tour. And guess who was behind the metal madness? Yep, none other than Western States Fire Protection, the official fire sprinkler company of Disturbed! Ok… we might not be officially the fire sprinkler of Disturbed, but hey, we can dream, right?

So, picture this: Disturbed, an unstoppable force of metal, was performing their heart out at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion just outside of Houston, TX. The crowd was electrified as they unleashed their pyro-filled set closer, “Inside the Fire.” Flames were shooting high, adding to the intensity and awesomeness of the show. But wait, things got a bit too hot to handle. Suddenly, the fire sprinklers were triggered, and it began to “rain” onstage. Yep, you read that right—the band’s fiery performance turned into an impromptu water show!

In the aftermath, David Draiman, frontman extraordinaire, took to Twitter and explained the whole ordeal with a good ol’ “lol” and mentioned how they got a “surprise rain shower” during the show. Lead guitarist, Dan Donegan, couldn’t help but be amazed, calling it a “first” in their career and one of the most memorable shows ever. Despite the unexpected rain, Disturbed kept rocking, completely unbothered, and the crowd loved every single minute of it.

You might wonder how Western States Fire Protection, a company that deals with fire sprinklers, got involved in this epic tale. Well, let’s just say our fire sprinklers were ready for anything, even a heavy metal firestorm! They performed their duty flawlessly, even if unintentionally.

Disturbed’s pyrotechnics-laden stage shows are legendary, and they’ve always pushed the boundaries to create an unforgettable experience for their fans. As David Draiman once said, “We blow it up pretty good, that’s for sure. We go through a lot of accelerant up there. It gets hot. But we love it. We live for it.” And boy, do their fans live for it too!

The Rockin’ Never Stops!

Disturbed’s “Take Back Your Life” tour has been nothing short of epic, and this little “rain shower” incident just added another chapter to their epic rock ‘n’ roll journey. Let’s take a moment to appreciate how Disturbed handled the water show with absolute grace and humor. After the rain-soaked performance, David Draiman introduced each band member, and then he couldn’t resist adding a cheeky remark, “Make some noise for the freaking sprinkler system!”

That’s the spirit, David! Make some noise for the freaking (WSFP) fire sprinkler!

In the end, Disturbed’s fiery pyrotechnics met their match with Western States Fire Protection’s trusty fire sprinklers. It was a moment that will go down in concert history as one of the most unforgettable and amusing incidents. And to all the rock bands out there, if you need fire sprinklers that can handle anything, look no further than Western States Fire Protection. We’ve got you covered (and your audience too)!

Top-Quality Fire Extinguisher Inspections & Services

Partner with WSFP for All Your Fire Extinguisher Needs

Depending on the market and the need, Western States Fire Protection will provide fire extinguisher sales and services to our customers. (We do not sell individual fire extinguishers for one-time use in your home.)

Fire extinguishers are an essential part of fire safety for both homes and businesses. When it comes to purchasing a fire extinguisher, there are a few key factors to consider:

  • Fire extinguisher categories: Numerous fire extinguisher categories exist, like ABC extinguishers, which are appropriate for most fire incidents, or specialized variants like CO2 extinguishers specifically designed for electrical fires. It’s important to choose the right type based on the potential fire risks in your environment.
  • Size and capacity: Fire extinguishers come in various sizes, typically measured in pounds or kilograms. The size you choose will depend on the size of the area you need to protect. Larger spaces may require multiple extinguishers or larger-capacity ones.
  • Certification and compliance: Ensure that the fire extinguisher you purchase meets the necessary certifications and standards. Look for a UL (Underwriters Laboratories) label to ensure the extinguisher has been tested and approved.
  • Maintenance and servicing: Regular maintenance and servicing are crucial to ensure the fire extinguisher remains in proper working condition. This includes periodic inspections, recharge, and hydrostatic testing. It’s important to establish a schedule for these services to ensure the extinguisher is always ready to use in case of an emergency.

Partner with WSFP to Determine Your Extinguisher Needs

When purchasing a fire extinguisher, it is recommended to consult with a reputable fire safety company or supplier. Western States Fire Protection provides guidance to businesses and new construction on the appropriate type and size of extinguisher for your needs and will help with installation and maintenance.

Remember, having a fire extinguisher is not enough; it’s equally important to educate yourself and others on how to use it correctly. Familiarize yourself with the operating instructions and train your employees on fire safety protocols.

Fire Extinguisher Ongoing Services

Like all other forms of life safety systems and devices, fire extinguishers need to be inspected and serviced or recharged regularly. Western States Fire Protection provides services as needed to keep your extinguishers in the ready.

Fire extinguisher inspections and recharge services are a must for any business owner. There will be requirements you need to meet for your insurance, state and local regulations, and industry standards.

Fire Extinguisher Inspections

Fire extinguisher inspections are an essential part of ensuring the safety of your business.

Western States Fire Protection will inspect your fire extinguishers to check if they are working properly and meet safety standards. The inspection will be thorough and will determine the condition of the extinguishers.

The inspection process typically involves:

  • Visual Inspection: checking for any physical damage or wear and tear on the extinguisher, verifying that the pressure gauge is within the acceptable range, and ensuring that the safety pin and tamper seal are intact. We will also inspect the hose, nozzle, and handle for any signs of damage or blockage.
  • In addition to the visual inspection, the fire extinguisher may also be tested to ensure that it discharges properly and effectively. This may involve emptying and refilling the extinguisher with a non-hazardous substance to simulate a real fire scenario.
  • Regular fire extinguisher inspections are important to catch any potential issues early on and ensure that your extinguishers are ready to be used in case of an emergency. It is recommended to have inspections conducted annually or more frequently depending on your specific industry regulations.

What is a Fire Extinguisher Recharge Service?

Fire Extinguisher Recharge Services - fire extinguisher inspection near me, fire extinguisher inspections, fire extinguisher tagging

  • A fire extinguisher recharge service is a procedure that involves inspecting, refilling, and replacing parts of a fire extinguisher.
  • The service is typically done by a professional fire protection company with experience in fire safety and fire extinguishers.
  • Recharging a fire extinguisher is necessary to ensure it is working properly and will be able to be used in case of an emergency.

Benefits of Recharging Your Fire Extinguisher

  • Recharging a fire extinguisher ensures it is functioning correctly and is ready for use in the event of an emergency.
  • It helps to keep your fire extinguisher compliant with fire safety regulations.
  • It can help to extend the life of the fire extinguisher and reduce the need for expensive replacements.

Partner with WSFP for Your Fire Extinguisher Sales & Service Needs

Having a presence in more than 40 places throughout the Western region of the United States, and a network of affiliated businesses nationwide, we are fully equipped to cater to all your fire protection and extinguisher needs across the country.

Contact WSFP today to get started.