Fire sprinkler systems are common in commercial buildings, but they're less common in residential homes. In fact, other than luxury properties, they're pretty rare. But that's surprising, because not only are they affordable, but they can greatly increase your home's safety. Here's what you need to know about installing a new fire sprinkler system in your existing home.
It's More Expensive to Retrofit—But the Cost Is Based on Size
Your fire sprinkler costs will usually be based on the size of your home. If you have a small-to-moderately sized home, the costs could be fairly light. If you have a very large home, the costs could be substantial. It's a good idea to get a quote before guessing at estimates, because there are so many factors involved, such as where your water lines are and if your home is split level.
Fire Sprinklers Are Essentially Maintenance Free
Most sprinkler systems will not need to be maintained at all and can last up to two decades. You won't need to worry about them once they're installed. They usually have a mechanical trigger, such as a piece of glass that breaks at a certain temperature.
A Fire Sprinkler System May Save You on Your Insurance
Some of the costs of a fire sprinkler system can be mitigated by the fact that your insurance costs will go down. Insurance companies recognize the increased safety provided by a fire sprinkler, and they're very willing to reduce your insurance premiums to compensate. That being said, your insurance costs aren't going to go down tremendously because there's still the risk of water damage: though a fire may not consume your home, the sprinklers could still damage electronics or other items. But this is still better than losing your property.
Fire Sprinklers Can Stop Most Fires
The cost aside, fire sprinklers stop almost all fires. Fire sprinklers will activate when a certain amount of heat has been detected in your home and will dump water on everything inside of your home. This fast reaction essentially stops fires before they can spread. They only fail in very rare cases. Thus, while a sprinkler system could be expensive, you're trading the cost for a significant increase in safety.
Many new homes are coming with fire sprinklers already installed, but older homes often don't have them. You can get a quote for a fire sprinkler system as well as one from your insurance company to see whether it might save you enough money to pay for itself. For more information, contact a local fire sprinkler supplier like Allied Fire & Safety Equipment Co Inc.