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Posted on October 18, 2011

Houston Fire Sprinklers: Myths vs. Facts

If you own a home or building in Houston, Texas, the fire code requires you to have a Houston fire sprinkler installed. But for many people, fire sprinklers are somewhat mysterious (the fact that you can’t touch them doesn’t help!). Below is a list of the most common Houston fire sprinkler myths that have kept up through the years – hopefully we can finally put them to rest!

The Most Common Houston Fire Sprinkler Myths

Fire sprinklers will damage my house!

Myth: Sprinkler water causes more damage than fire.

Fact: The reason this myth won’t die is because people see sprinklers putting out fires right away and assume that the water from the sprinkler is causing more damage than the fire itself. What they forget to consider, however, is what would happen if the sprinklers didn’t go off! By the time the fire department arrives, your house could be fully involved – completely engulfed in flame. Moreover, Houston fire sprinklers deliver between 8 – 24 gallons of water per minute. Fire department hoses, on the other hand, can fill your home with 50 – 125 gpm!

Every fire sprinkler head goes off at once!

Myth: When one sprinkler head activates, they all activate.

Fact: Houston fire sprinklers are activated individually by heat. In fact, 90% of all residential fires are controlled by 6 fire sprinkler heads or fewer – 82% are controlled by 2 or fewer!

Sprinklers will prevent the fire department from working!

Myth: Houston fire sprinklers steal water from the fire department hose lines.

Fact: A properly designed Houston fire sprinkler system has water supply lines for the sprinkler system AND the fire department (need Houston fire sprinkler design? Call Kauffman Co!).

I already have a smoke detector!

Myth: A smoke alarm provides as much protection as a Houston fire sprinkler.

Fact: Smoke detectors will provide a warning when a fire has broken out, but they can do nothing to extinguish an existing fire or aid those who are incapable of escaping. For maximum protection, smoke detectors should be paired with Houston fire sprinkler systems.

My sprinkler won’t protect me – just my stuff!

Myth: Fire sprinklers are only designed to protect property – they are not effective for life safety.

Fact: Fire sprinklers are designed to protect both life AND property. According to statistics, there has never been a multi casualty fire in a fully sprinklered building! In addition, property losses in sprinklered homes are 85% less than in unsprinklered buildings, and injuries are reduced by 50%.

I can’t afford to install a fire sprinkler system in my home!

Myth: Houston fire sprinklers are prohibitively expensive for first time home buyers.

Fact: Sprinkler systems in new homes account for approximately 1% of new home construction costs – comparable to what you’d pay for carpet upgrades, a new driveway or a whirlpool bath.

I don’t need a sprinkler system because new buildings are safer than old buildings!

Myth: It’s unfair to target new construction because new buildings are built safe.

Fact: It’s true that more fires occur in older buildings, simply because there are more older buildings in the country than newer buildings!

In reality, modern construction techniques such as webbed truss construction, vented soffits and composite materials put newer buildings at much greater fire risk than older buildings!

Now that you know a little more about Houston fire sprinklers, we hope you feel better about installing one in your home or building. For Houston fire sprinkler system installation, call Kauffman Co today!

We provide estimates for new and replacement fire protection systems throughout Texas (TX) in:

  • Alvin
  • Angleton
  • Austin
  • Baytown
  • Beaumont
  • Bellaire
  • Clute
  • Conroe
  • Deer Park
  • Dickinson
  • Freeport
  • Friendswood
  • Galena Park
  • Galveston
  • Houston
  • Humble
  • Huntsville
  • Jacinto City
  • Katy
  • La Marque
  • La Porte
  • Lake Charles, LA
  • Lake Jackson
  • League City
  • Missouri City
  • Orange
  • Pasadena
  • Pearland
  • Port Arthur
  • Richmond
  • Rosenberg
  • San Antonio
  • Schulenburg
  • South Houston
  • Stafford
  • Sugar Land
  • Texas City
  • The Woodlands
  • Victoria
  • Waco
For more information, contact us online or call us now at (713) 893-1090.
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