Preventive Fire

What Are the Most Common Types of Fire Suppression Systems?

When you’re considering fire protection for your situation, it’s important to determine what types of fires are most likely to occur. For instance, a restaurant will face a greater risk of chemical-based fires than a lumber store. Knowing the risks of fire for your facility will help you choose the fire suppression system that best suits your needs.

Water-Based Systems

When using any type of fire protection system, you’ll have fire alarms and other detection equipment that activates the suppression equipment. In the case of a water suppression system, the signal will instruct a series of water sprinklers to activate, dowsing the area with water. 

A water suppression system isn’t ideal in all situations. For example, water won’t extinguish class B fires or those in which oil-based products are present. The water may actually cause this type of fire to spread. Additionally, using water can harm electronics and cause almost as much structural damage to the facility as the fire itself. 

Chemical Foam Systems

A system that uses chemical foam to extinguish fires is preferable in many situations. For instance, it’s more effective for class B fires and won’t cause water damage. These are just a few of the reasons to use chemical foam with kitchen fire systems.

Installing kitchen hood systems that use chemical suppression requires a more expensive setup. It involves installing stainless steel pipes that route the chemical foam to the nozzles in the hood. A chemical foam system is ideal in restaurant kitchens and other places where there are higher risks for class B fires.

Pressurized Gas Systems

In many commercial and industrial settings, there is plenty of sensitive electronic equipment that can suffer damage when exposed to water or chemical foam. You will still need some type of fire suppression system in these areas, and that’s where a pressurized gas system becomes beneficial. 

In this type of system, liquid nitrogen keeps the gas in liquid form as it sits in the pipes. As the system detects a fire, it releases the gas. During that process, oxygen reacts with the liquid, transforming it into a gas. The resulting chemical reaction between the gas and the fire safely extinguishes the flames.

Marine fire protection systems use this type of technology. It’s also used in factories and in areas where oxygen suppression isn’t an option.

Foam Deluge Systems

Foam deluge fire suppression systems also use chemical foam, but they cover a wider area. This system is ideal in situations where water suppression and gas systems aren’t ideal. It involves releasing vast amounts of foam over a large area, separating the fire from sources of oxygen. As a result, the fire gets smothered.

In addition to outdoor venues, a foam deluge system is common on oil tankers and in areas where there are transformers. Since the system uses water to expand the foam, it can spread farther and extinguish heavier fires.

The major disadvantage of this system is the clean-up process. After extinguishing the fire, the foam gets left behind. The clean-up usually involves rinsing the area with water hoses to flush the foam. If the foam extinguishes a fire in an indoor area, you can use fans, air conditioners, and open windows to promote faster drying.

Turn to Professionals for Additional Help

If you’re still not sure what type of fire protection you need, turn to the experts at Preventive Fire. We carry a comprehensive line of high-quality fire prevention and suppression systems for any use case. And once we’ve installed your equipment, we’ll also come out and service it to keep it in top-performing condition and protect your property. 

For the best in fire safety, contact the professionals at Preventive Fire today.