A Look at Three Notable Fire Suppression Systems

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You may already be familiar with some automatic suppression systems, such as automatic sprinklers that turn on when a fire is detected. However, there are numerous other types of systems specifically designed for use in areas where fire danger is high, such as in a commercial kitchen or in industrial painting operations. Learn more about three important types of fire suppression systems below.

Commercial Kitchen Fire Suppression Systems

Commercial fire suppression systems are designed for large kitchens, such as those in restaurants. These systems are specifically used in suppressing and controlling grease fires. They include a ventilation hood, which is placed over the stove, as well as automatic and manual options that release potassium carbonate in small droplets when a fire is detected near appliances or in the hood or ducts. Not only does this help put out a grease fire, but it prevents it from reigniting.

Components to a commercial fire suppression system include:

  • Cylinder control head
  • Piping
  • Cylinders
  • Nozzles
  • Remote manual pull station
  • Fusible link detection equipment
  • Automatic gas shut-off valve
  • Corner pulleys and accessories
  • Agent distributions hose
  • Flexible conduit

In addition, a carbon dioxide cartridge is often used as a pneumatic releasing device as a part of the control head assembly.

Industrial Fire Suppression Systems

Industrial fire suppression systems are used in paint booths for auto body shops, RV and truck painting, and metal shops that do any kind of industrial painting. These systems are “designed to confine or limit the escape of spray, vapor, and residue” as defined by Pyrochem.

In a modular design, a room or work area is constructed with ventilation appropriate for residual matter. Sets of fire suppressant nozzles are strategically placed to reduce hazards. These systems can be automatic or manual, although they typically offer activation using either method.

There are also a range of industrial systems that are a wet pipe sprinkler design, while others use dry material to suppress fires. These dry pipe sprinkler systems, which use foam or chemical suppressants, are typically used in areas where freezing is common, such as in industrial warehouses or commercial freezers. However, dry chemical systems are also used in paint booths alongside a mechanical or electrical thermal detector that monitors temperatures in the work area.

Components of this type of system typically include:

  • Cylinder and agent
  • Control head and other controls
  • Distinction nozzles
  • Pipes and fittings

Vehicle Fire Suppression Systems

Vehicle fire suppression systems are those present in heavy machinery vehicles, such as log loaders, large chippers that cup up class A Material like wood, front-end loaders, and CAT bulldozers. Like other fire suppressant systems, these can also be both automatic and manual. However, since they only provide localized hazard protection, they should not be treated as a substitute for alternative fire equipment, as these systems may not extinguish all fires. In addition, it’s important to note that one size does not fit all, so each heavy machinery vehicle should be equipped with a system specifically scaled to its needs.

Components include:

  • Agent storage tank
  • Mounting ring
  • Expellant gas cartridge
  • Distribution hose and nozzles
  • Manual/automatic actuator
  • Automatic detection system

Each system will differ depending on the particular design. However, it is important that your fire suppressant system is specifically designed for the appropriate application and the chemicals used in its environment. Substituting other systems when a commercial kitchen, industrial, or vehicle fire suppressant system is needed is extremely dangerous, so when you’re working in high-risk areas, be sure you have an optimal system in place and that it is checked and maintained frequently so that it runs well, should it ever be needed.

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