Spare Sprinkler Heads

Here’s a quick quiz: How many spare sprinkler heads are you required to have on hand at your facility? If you said 6, then you would be partially correct. The number of spare heads that you are required to have on hand is directly correlated to the type, rating and quantity of heads you have in the facility. The minimum required is 6 of each type and rating.

The differences in type would be the orientation of the head (pendant vs. upright vs sidewall), standard response vs. quick response, and recessed or surface mounted. While most heads in a typical healthcare setting would be rated for 155 degrees, you may find higher temperature heads in the boiler room, over the kitchen cooking appliances and other high temperature areas.

Also, NFPA 13 Standard for Installation of Sprinkler Systems (1999 edition), section 3-2.9 requires not fewer than 6 spare heads when the quantity of sprinkler in the building is less than 300. For systems that have between 300 and 1000 sprinklers in the building, then 12 spare heads of each type and rating are required to be in storage. For systems with more than 1000 sprinkler heads then you must have at least 24 spare heads for each type and rating. And the spare heads must be stored in a cabinet where the ambient temperature does not exceed 100 degrees F. A special wrench to install the heads is also required to be stored with the spare heads.

So, it may be useful for you to find the location where you keep the spare heads, and make sure you have the correct quantity in storage for each type and rating of heads installed in the facility. And don’t forget to look for the special installation wrenches.