The 5-year fire sprinkler inspection is an NFPA mandated inspection examining the insides of your fire sprinklers’ piping. The examination must be carried out a minimum of every 5 years.
If sufficient foreign organic or inorganic material is discovered to be obstructing the pipe or sprinklers, then there will be a more comprehensive obstruction investigation.
The obstruction investigation will take place at a minimum of four points in the fire sprinkler system:
If obstructions are found, a complete flushing program will be conducted to remove all foreign materials from the piping.
Even over a relatively short period of time and even in new fire sprinkler pipes installed in a newer structure, sludge and build up can occur surprisingly quickly.
When these obstructions develop, they diminish or even prevent the flow of the life- and property-saving water through your fire sprinklers in the event of a fire. Keeping your fire sprinkler piping up to code by adhering to the 5-year internal inspection will mean ensuring that both your property, your employees and your customers are safe.
Inspection vs. Investigation
Chapter 14 of NFPA 25 describes two distinctly different activities relating to obstructions in sprinkler systems.
An obstruction inspection is required at 5 year intervals and is intended to be very minimal to avoid lengthy system outages. It should be conducted at the same time as the required 5 year interior inspection of control valves, alarms valves, dry valves, etc. Inspection are intended to reveal potential problems that would require a more thorough investigation procedure.
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