Fighting Fires With Science

Fire suppression setups and sprinkler systems both have the same goal: putting out a fire. No two fires are alike, so you can’t use the same techniques on every single one. Understanding the science behind fires is key to selecting the best method of fire control for your home or office.

How Fires Work

When considering fire suppression installation Mt Vernon NY, you should know how fires burn. They’re chemical reactions that need three things to perpetuate: fuel, heat and oxygen. You may have heard of the ABC rating system, which classifies fires by their type of fuel. Class A fires consume wood, cloth, paper, trash or plastics. Class B fires involve flammable liquids like gas or oil. Class C fires can generate from live electrical current. Some systems include Class D fires from combustible metals and Class K fires from cooking oils and grease.

Disrupting the Fire Triangle

Water removes a fire’s oxygen source and heat, which works well on Class A fires. Yet it can be ineffective or dangerous on Class B, C, D and K fires. Adding water to flammable liquids may spread a fire. Water also contains charged ions that conduct electricity, posing a risk of electrocution. That’s why other firefighting methods are sometimes necessary. Non-water suppressing agents can disrupt the fire triangle without aggravating the fire itself.

Fire Suppression Systems

Fire suppression and sprinkler systems put out fires through different methods. Sprinkler systems release water onto a fire. Common types include wet pipe, dry pipe, pre-action and deluge. Suppression systems do not use water but discharge substances such as compressed liquified gas, carbon dioxide and wet or dry chemicals.

A fire suppression strategy is just one component of your fire safety plan. Fire prevention and emergency evacuation procedures are also important. Yet choosing a fire suppression system that matches your needs can help protect both people and property.