The NFPA 25 standard (National Fire Protection Association), governs the inspection, testing and maintenance of water-based fire suppression systems and gives timelines for what should be covered in quarterly, semiannual, annual and five-year inspections. This applies to fire safety systems for both new construction and existing structures and systems.

At Statcomm, we focus on certain chapters of NFPA 25, specifically chapters 5, 6, 7 and 8, as well as Title 19 of the California Code of Regulations Chapter 5: Automatic Extinguishing Systems.

Today, we will be joining a Statcomm technician, Jamal, who will be performing the NFPA 25 5-year fire sprinkler inspection. Now, let’s take it over to Jamal!

Jamal: So, on every five-year [inspection], one of our goals is to make sure that the system is clean and there’s nothing congesting the pipes. Every five years, we come to this check valve. We want to flip this over so we can flush out the system and make sure there’s no…I’ve seen socks, clothing items, toys, soda cans, food wrappers—anything could be in here. So once every five years, we make sure we come in and flush it out. 

Jamal, what does PIV stand for?

Jamal: This is the PIV. It’s the main shutoff that feeds the building from the city [water] supply. So PIV is a Post-Indicator Valve. Before we do anything relating to any sprinklers on the inside of the building, we must make sure we shut this off before we drain any buildings. If we didn’t shut this off, the building would just keep getting water and [flood]. So what we do on the 5-year is we shut [the PIV] off, then we flip [the check valve] over. We flush out the system for about 2-3 minutes until the water is completely clear. Then we can reassure that there’s nothing congesting the system. We flip the check valve back over and then we can start our inspections on the inside. 

Thanks, Jamal! Now we see you standing next to the main fire riser. What are you inspecting here?

Jamal: This is the fire riser. This is directly connected to the PIV that we saw earlier. So here’s the main feed, and this fills all the sprinklers for this particular building. So during the 5-year testing inspection, one thing we want to look for is that the signs are still readable. These two signs are the main drain and testing inspection. The reason they need to be readable is so that any time the fire department is here, instead of looking for them, they’ll point [the firefighters] to the right direction.

This is also a tapper for the riser. We use this to shut off the water coming in from the main feed if we don’t shut down the PIV. This also reports to the panel to let it know it’s working, so if this were to be completely shut, it would send a signal to the panel to let whoever’s here doing the inspection or coming to repair anything know that they need to reopen it and get water back into the system.

Thank you, Jamal!

Statcomm is your all-in-one fire protection resource. At Statcomm, we specialize in resolving the most challenging fire and sprinkler system problems by applying our expertise and problem-solving techniques to the task. If you would like to learn more about Statcomm and the NFPA, please let us know by emailing us here at, statcares@statcomm.com


 

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