Water mist fire protection is increasingly becoming a popular choice for ensuring fire safety on most commercial buildings in Singapore. The system is designed to release small water droplets under intense pressure that can effectively put out fires in a short time without causing any serious damage. In fact, water mist systems are considered the smart replacement for conventional fire sprinkler systems.
How a Water Mist System Works
To really understand the value of water mist fire protection, you should first look into how it operates. As the name suggests, the system produces very fine and pressurized water sprays to contain, suppress and stop flames. When directed towards the flames, the sprays first act by cooling off the combustion and displacing the oxygen that supports burning. Finally, the droplets of water smother the heat, thereby extinguishing the fire.
The effectiveness of water mist fire protection mainly depends on the spray characteristics including size of water droplets, pressure and water density. In terms of pressure, the systems are designed for low, medium and high pressure. Low pressure water mist systems operate under the same pressure as the ordinary water sprinklers, which is suitable for suppressing small fires in homes, office spaces, warehouses and other smaller enclosures.
Medium or intermediate pressure ranges from 175 psi to 500 psi, which can effectively extinguish a wide range of fires in living and work spaces. High pressure water mist systems release water under pressure of 500 psi and above. You can even find systems with pressures of up to 2,300 psi, recommended for putting out huge fires in commercial and industrial spaces.
Unlike what some may think, water mist systems with smaller water droplet sizes are the best for extinguishing fires quickly. Systems that produce large droplets are also good but, they are mainly ideal for small and low temperature fires.
When buying water mist systems, it is also important to consider the nozzles. The systems can have either deluge or automatic nozzles. Deluge nozzles remain open at all the times such that as soon as the water flows into the system, they start releasing it towards the flames. Automatic nozzles are designed with a thermal element covering the head that will instantly burst under high temperatures, allowing the flow of water to extinguish the fire.
Most water mist systems use stainless steel pipes for moving the water to the nozzles. Although the pipes are accorded anti-corrosive coating, it is always advisable to only use tap water to prevent rust. Untreated water could corrode the pipes and cause blockage of the nozzles, making the system ineffective during fire emergencies.
The Unique Benefits of Water Mist Fire Protection
Water mist systems operate more like fire sprinklers, which could sometimes, create problems in decision making. While fire sprinklers have been around longer than water mist systems, the latter has proven to be a much better option for fire safety. Compared to gaseous fire suppression agents and water sprinklers, water mist fire protection is proven to deliver the following unique benefits.
Whether the nozzles are deluge or automated, water mist systems always provide more rapid response that enables users to safely and quickly put out fires.
Better efficiency in suppressing different types and classes of fires
Unlike CO2 fire suppression agents or fire sprinkler systems, water mist systems produce very fine water droplets that can effectively penetrate into the seat of flames, extinguishing different types of fires. Besides, the water droplets that the system releases also provide an increased cooling effect that ensures fires are quickly extinguished.
Eco-friendly fire protection
Another benefit of water mist systems is that they have no impacts to humans, pets and the environment. Regardless of where it is used to suppress fires, water mist systems have no toxicity issues, making them a safe fire protection alternative for both living and work spaces.
Less water consumption and damage
With water mist systems, you will not require large volumes of water to put out fires. The system uses much less water than sprinklers to extinguish different fires, which also makes it quite economical. Due to the small droplets of pressurized water released by the system, there is a significantly reduced risk of water damage to your belongings after use.