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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

What Happens if Your Building's Sprinkler System Malfunctions

9/2/2020 (Permalink)

Active fire sprinkler Fire systems can activate without the presence of fire

What Happens if Your Building's Sprinkler System Malfunctions

If you own a commercial building in Whittier, CA, sprinkler maintenance must be part of your building's regular upkeep. Fire systems can activate without the presence of fire due to the following:

  • Hot lights
  • Frozen pipes
  • Corroded pipes
  • Accidental contact

The National Fire Protection Association recommends year-round inspections to ensure that sprinklers activate to extinguish fires and don't malfunction. Inspections also prevent unintentional activation that can reduce the below risks.

Property Damage
When a sprinkler system activates, gallons of water flood the space. It is necessary to contact a professional commercial cleaning service that can remove excess water as soon as possible. Water can quickly penetrate porous surfaces, including carpets, upholstery, and window treatments. Hard surfaces, including office equipment and furnishings, can be irreparably damaged by fast-moving water.

Mold
Water that forcefully discharges from a malfunctioning sprinkler system can quickly grow the mold spores that penetrate the air, walls, ceilings, and floors. Year-round sprinkler maintenance can identify potential risks for accidental activation that may lead to flooding and mold formation. Once mold forms, it is necessary to undertake mold remediation measures, including air filtration, to remove contaminants from the environment.

Odors
Shortly after fire sprinklers activate, water that penetrates surfaces can cause odors. These smells are due to mold spores suspended in the air or wet materials like wool carpets and upholstery. Professional odor removal methods, including ozone treatment, are often the only way to eliminate these unpleasant aromas.

Document Damage
Paper documents and files are particularly vulnerable to water damage from faulty fire sprinklers. If your business relies on paper files, it is crucial to contact a professional restoration service within hours of a sprinkler-related flood. Document freeze-drying methods can salvage your business's vital papers, but only if they are employed promptly.
Diligent fire sprinkler maintenance can ensure fire safety and avoid unintentional and costly damage to you and your Whittier, CA, building tenants.

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