Frozen fire sprinkler lines can cause problems in winter cold - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Frozen fire sprinkler lines can cause problems in winter cold

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

By now, you have likely heard what you need to do to keep your pipes from freezing: keep them warm and let the faucets drip when temperatures sink.

But there's another problem many people weren't expecting when temperatures plunged into single digits two weeks ago. Fire sprinklers burst in dozens of homes and apartment buildings, soaking everything inside.

With another arctic blast settling into Middle Tennessee, there are some important steps to protect your home or apartment.

Experts say insulation is the key as well as keeping the heat on, even in rooms that are empty or unoccupied.

"The contractors have put it in according to the standard, but we're seeing that the homebuilding industry or the insulators are not going back, putting insulation properly to protect the piping from freezing in the attic," said Wayne Waggoner, executive director of the Tennessee Fire Sprinkler Contractors Association.

Pipes in unheated spaces should be covered with insulation, and Waggoner says that's the homeowner's or building contractors' responsibility, not the sprinkler installer's.

Waggoner says sprinklers above unheated garages are a common problem.

"That's pretty much an unheated area, and you don't want to put a water pipe in an area where it will have a tendency to freeze. And that's where most of our problems come into play in single family houses, is in garages," he said.

If you have a fire sprinkler in your home, Waggoner recommends you have it inspected at least once a year.

One sprinkler company we talked to recommended quarterly.

And for landlords of multi-unit buildings, make sure there's heat on in all the empty apartments. Keep the temperature above 40 degrees.

"Places that are not heated, that have a sprinkler head, they're going to freeze and break if they're not protected appropriately," Waggoner said.

Waggoner said his association has been polling around the state, and he knows of about 15 apartment complexes that had burst sprinkler pipes during that early January burst of polar air.

Copyright 2014 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

  • Frozen fire sprinkler lines can cause problems in winter coldMore>>

  • Weather links sidebar

    4WARN Weather

    Sunday, February 15 2015 1:42 PM EST2015-02-15 18:42:03 GMT
    Sunday, February 15 2015 1:42 PM EST2015-02-15 18:42:03 GMT
    Weather alerts 4WARN Doppler Radar 4WARN Zoom Radar 4WARN 7-day forecast Download: Mobile AppSignup: Text, Closing alertsMore >>
    Weather alerts4WARN Doppler Radar4WARN Zoom Radar4WARN 7-day forecastMore >>
  • NEWSMore>>

  • Oyster garden program underway in Mississippi

    Oyster garden program underway in Mississippi

    Monday, June 26 2017 6:15 PM EDT2017-06-26 22:15:42 GMT

    The Mississippi oyster gardening program is up and running. Baby oysters were delivered last week to several sites along the coast, where residents will watch over their growth until this fall, when they will be used to help restore existing reefs.

    More >>

    The Mississippi oyster gardening program is up and running. Baby oysters were delivered last week to several sites along the coast, where residents will watch over their growth until this fall, when they will be used to help restore existing reefs.

    More >>
  • Pascagoula River leaves George County waterlogged

    Pascagoula River leaves George County waterlogged

    Monday, June 26 2017 5:43 PM EDT2017-06-26 21:43:33 GMT
    For river dwellers, wading through the water may look like fun, but it's not. (Photo source: WLOX)For river dwellers, wading through the water may look like fun, but it's not. (Photo source: WLOX)

    Combine more than 15 inches of rain and a large river that drains hundreds of miles, and the results usually aren't good. That's the situation in George County, where the Pascagoula River is well above flood stage.

    More >>

    Combine more than 15 inches of rain and a large river that drains hundreds of miles, and the results usually aren't good. That's the situation in George County, where the Pascagoula River is well above flood stage.

    More >>
  • Jogger attacked by three dogs in Vancleave; owner charged

    Jogger attacked by three dogs in Vancleave; owner charged

    Monday, June 26 2017 5:22 PM EDT2017-06-26 21:22:38 GMT

    Justin McMillian was on his morning jog near Paige Bayou Road in Vancleave when things took a sudden, violent turn. Officials say three pit bulls broke out of the fence where they were being kept and attacked him.

    More >>

    Justin McMillian was on his morning jog near Paige Bayou Road in Vancleave when things took a sudden, violent turn. Officials say three pit bulls broke out of the fence where they were being kept and attacked him.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly