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Tag: fire pumps

All About Fire Pumps

In this ever-changing world, one thing you can count on is for us to be here to support your fire protection needs. Since we are considered an essential business, our ability to provide these services continues.

Also, we are going to continue providing useful blog content on our website and sharing it on social media. Even in times like these, we feel like we need to continue our discussions about fire protection topics as we have in the past.

Fire Pumps

Depending on how your building is laid out and how your sprinkler system works – it might not be able to control or extinguish fires unless there is enough water pressure. When this occurs, you’ll need to make sure there’s a fire pump installed and if there isn’t one – that you have one put in.

Fire pumps come in all sorts of different makes and models. It’s important to understand what each one does – as its ability to pump water will have a significant impact on your fire safety planning. Here are some of the most popular fire pumps that you’ll encounter, what they do and what makes them appealing as well as what their limitations are.

Horizontal Split Case

Horizontal Split Cases are by far the most popular fire pump out on the market today. While it needs its own water source and isn’t necessarily a part of your fire suppression system, it’s still surprisingly easy to work with. In fact, if you ask a fire safety pro, most will probably say this is their preferred pump to work with.

Not only are the parts easy to maintain, but these systems can last for years and are among the most reliable pumps on the market.

Vertical Split Cases

Vertical split cases are basically the exact same thing as a horizontal split case – except they have vertical components. The good thing about this model is that it takes up significantly less floor space than their cousins. This is important – especially in small buildings where space is at more of a premium. These systems are built to go ‘up’ as opposed to out.

Vertical In-line

Vertical in-line pumps are a little different from split-case pumps in the sense that they’re a lot smaller. Like Vertical split cases, their primary claim to fame is that they save space in buildings where there isn’t much room to be had. They do need a special base to anchor them though, and they can be a pain for service professionals when it comes time for preventative maintenance. Just to get at some of the most basic components, the system has to be taken apart. So while they work great and save you a ton of space (they’re also ultra-durable), they’re a little bit of a bear when it comes to simple service.

Think of them as a higher-end sports car. They’ll last forever, they handle, drive and look great and you can be sure you won’t deal with many issues. But when you do – it’s expensive.

Vertical Turbine

No matter what kind of system you have, they all require some sort of positive suction to draw water from an outside source. Not with a vertical turbine, though. Instead, these pumps can use water drawn from nearby wells and tanks. It’s then moved to the top and is used whenever it needs to be. The motor is almost always located on top of the pump as well – making it both easy to monitor and maintain.

If you have any questions on this topic or any other fire protection topics, please feel free to contact Protegis Fire & Safety.

We hope you and your family have continued good health. Take care.

The Importance of Testing Your Fire Pump

A fire pump is an integral component of a total fire protection system.  A fire protection system at a facility may include automatic sprinkler systems, standpipes, hose stations, and/or fire hydrants.


The purpose of a fire pump is to provide or enhance the water supply pressure from public mains, suction tanks, gravity/elevated tanks, lakes, and other bodies of water.

The building owner or a representative (e.g., management company) is responsible for the maintenance of the fire pump.  Fire pumps should be inspected, maintained and tested per the manufacturer’s specifications.  If the manufacturer’s specifications are unavailable, refer to the standard for the maintenance of fire pumps NFPA 25 (Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems) or contact the Protegis Fire & Safety’s Automatic Sprinkler Systems Inspection, Maintenance, and Testing Department.

A comprehensive maintenance program is generally broken down into three components:  inspection, maintenance and testing.

Inspection.  A visual examination of the fire pump to verify that it appears to be in operating condition and is free of physical damage.  Examples include:

  • Heat in pump room is minimum 40 degrees F (70 degrees F for diesel engines)
  • Pump suction, discharge, and bypass valves are open.
  • Controller pilot light (power on) is illuminated.

Protegis also offers maintenance that is performed during this inspection.
Examples include:

  • Lubricate pump bearings
  • Clean pump room louvers
  • Clean coolant strainer in coolant system

Testing.  A procedure used to determine the status of the fire pump and auxiliary equipment by conducting periodic physical checks.  Examples include:

  • Conduct a routine churn test as required by NFPA 25
    (run pump without water flowing)
  • Conduct an annual full-flow performance test
  • Operate alarm, supervisory, and trouble signals

Measures should be taken during an impairment to ensure that increased risks are minimized and that the duration of the impairment is limited.  NFPA 20 provides a trouble-shooting checklist to help in identifying causes of pump problems.  Qualified personnel, such as Fireguard, must make the necessary repairs and adjustments to ensure proper pump operation.

Understanding the proper selection, installation, and maintenance of a fire pump can make the difference between business as usual and a catastrophe at a facility. Let Protegis Fire & Safety be there for you for all your needs. We are your one stop shop for all commercial fire protection needs. Our services range from the installation of fire protection systems in new construction projects to retrofits, to service, testing and inspection of fire sprinkler systems, fire pumps, fire alarm systems, fire extinguishers, kitchen hood systems and emergency lights.