Sprinkler Systems and Freezing Weather

Prevent Flooding in Your Facility

In freezing weather, dry and pre-action fire sprinkler systems have a major Achilles heel if improperly maintained—the auxiliary drains. Auxiliary drains, also referred to as low-point drains or drum drips, are required on dry or pre-action fire sprinkler systems to collect condensation that forms in the pipes.

When improperly maintained, auxiliary drains break and can cause major facility flooding. The cost to repair and reset the fire sprinkler system itself is negligible compared to the cost of water damage mitigation, potential lost inventory, tenant interruption, increased liability, and increased insurance premiums.

Luckily, understanding attentive maintenance and other available solutions can help facilities prevent flooding caused by frozen auxiliary drains.

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AGF Introduces Flood Eliminator for Auxiliary Drains

Flood Eliminator is installed above the outlet of an auxiliary drain AGF Manufacturing is excited to introduce the Model 5900 Flood Eliminator, an attachment that prevents broken auxiliary drains from flooding a facility. The Model 5900 allows condensate water to collect normally in a standard drum drip. Pressurized flow from a failed drum drip automatically trips the auxiliary drain flood eliminator to cut off that flow. This eliminates the flooding and damage that would result from the system’s failure. The Flood Eliminator can be pre-assembled to AGF’s COLLECTanDRAIN auxiliary drains or retrofitted to existing auxiliary drains.

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Which States Require Air Vents? NFPA 13 (2016) Adoption Map

NFPA 13 (2016) and later editions require air vents on all wet pipe fire sprinkler systems utilizing metallic pipe. Jurisdictions across the US have been adopting these editions on their own or by reference in an IBC 2018 adoption. This chart shows which states have NFPA 13 (2016) adoption (or later editions) and which states will be adopting soon.

NFPA 13 (2016) adoption map

*Please consult your AHJ to confirm local code requirements

AGF’s PURGEnVENT line of manual and automatic air vents make it simple to meet code requirements with flexible installation options. Plus, PURGEnVENT patented air vents help protect your system from corrosion by releasing trapped air.

For questions about NFPA 13 (2016) changes regarding air vents and corrosion or NFPA 13 (2016) adoption, please contact us to talk to a member of our technical staff.

What is K-Factor?

AGF’s TESTanDRAIN and Inspector’sTEST valves come in a range of k-factors to best meet your needs. But what is k-factor?

K-factor helps to calculate the discharge rate from fire sprinkler heads. The K-factor also determines proper orifice sizing. AGF offers a full range of orifice sizes to accommodate any K-factor for all TESTanDRAIN models.

K-factor conversion chart
*Available on 1-1/4″, 1-1/2″, & 2″ size units only **Available on 1-1/2″ and 2″ size units only

Do you have more questions about K-factor? Contact us at 610-240-4900 to speak with a member of our technical staff.

Maintenance Considerations for Dry Sprinkler Systems

As seen in NFSA Tech Notes:

This Special Edition of TechNotes is an annual reissue of the relevant information to winterizing dry pipe sprinkler systems. It was originally written by Mark Hopkins, P.E., Vice President of Engineering for the NFSA and updated by Kevin Hall, P.E., Manager of Engineering Research for the NFSA.

As the temperature continues to drop, it is important to remind building owners and facility maintenance personnel of some important inspection and maintenance tasks necessary to keep their dry pipe systems in good operational condition during the winter months. Building owners and facility maintenance personnel need to recognize that NFPA 25-2020, Standard for the Inspection, Testing and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems, provides a minimum set of requirements. NFPA 25 section 1.2.1 states:

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Self-Maintaining Auxiliary Drain from AGF

AGF's Model 5450 Self-Maintaining Auxiliary DrainAGF Manufacturing is excited to introduce their COLLECTanDRAIN Model 5450 Self-Maintaining Auxiliary Drain. The Model 5450 is the latest in their line of heated auxiliary drain cabinets and includes all the benefits of the original Model 5400. The new cabinet features the ability to self-maintain the drain level and allow for maintenance to be better regulated.

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AGF Introduces New-and-Improved Universal 3-Way Gauge Valve

AGF Manufacturing has introduced a new-and-improved Universal 3-Way Gauge Valve. AGF’s Model 7600 Universal 3-Way Valve is heavier duty than most gauge valves on the market, has a 300 PSI Rating, and is UL listed. The repositioned and redesigned handle increases flexibility and accessibility on preassembled manifold risers. The Model 7600 is a component on RiserPACK Manifolds and select TESTanDRAIN models. It’s also available as a stand-alone product.

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