Wet vs. Dry Pipe Sprinkler Systems
Both wet and dry sprinkler systems extinguish fires using water, just in different ways.
In a wet system, the pipes are filled with pressurized water. When a fire occurs, the system immediately discharges water to extinguish the fire.
Conversely, dry systems are filled with pressurized nitrogen or air that keeps water at a riser. When a dry sprinkler system goes off, the pressure in the pipes drops, a valve opens, and water flows through the pipes and out to extinguish the fire.
The sprinkler heads in a wet system are connected to pipes that are filled with water. The system automatically goes off when a fire is detected. Wet sprinkler systems are the number one choice for most businesses because they’re simple to use and require little maintenance. This system type is also very reliable since the water is automatically dispersed when a fire occurs.
Sprinkler heads in a dry sprinkler system are connected to pipes that are filled with pressurized nitrogen or air. The gas or gas holds back water until a fire is detected.
Dry systems are the second most commonly used system. They are ideal for unheated buildings, parking garages, and warehouses since these types of properties can experience temperatures below 40°F (4.44 °C). Dry systems are also recommended for protecting areas that store sensitive equipment to minimize damage.