As a tenant, you must do everything within your ability to ensure your safety within a building. For instance, it is the responsibility of your property owner to make sure that the sprinkler system in your house is in good working condition. However, you should not always assume that your proprietor is abiding by the Part 12 of the Building Regulations. As such, there are steps you can personally take to ensure that the sprinklers will work whenever they are supposed. The following are three critical tips to ensuring your in-house fire sprinkler system is functioning as required:
Check for Paint on Sprinklers -- If you are a new tenant, the chances are that the unit you have moved into will have been painted recently. During a paint job, there is a possibility that the paintbrush will brush over the sprinkler's cover plate. In such a case, the sprinklers ability to operate optimally will be compromised, which is risky. Therefore, once you move into a new apartment, ensure that there is no paint blocking the sprinkler heads. If you find out that the cover head has been painted over, you should inform the property owner immediately. The cover would need to be replaced before you can move in.
Keep Boxes and Shelves Away – Once you have moved in, it is time to arrange your stuff in your new residence. A rule of thumb is to keep boxes and shelves away from the in-house sprinkler heads. You might think that stacking boxes on top of each other and leaving a few inches between the sprinklers and the boxes is fine. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Tables and shelves should be at least 18 inches below the fire sprinklers. Anything above the height is a safety hazard to you and other tenants:
Keep Valves Open, Always -- A fire sprinkler with closed valves is as good as a faulty one. However, it is common for fire detection systems to give false alarms and activate the sprinkler system, which could damage a house. As a result, most people decide to close the valves especially when they are in the house and open them when they are out. It is a big no-no because life is more important than property. Therefore, make sure that you keep your sprinkler valves open at all times. Doing so will help you to avoid scampering around the apartment while struggling to activate the tamper switches.
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