Testing Your Fire Sprinkler System

Test Every Six Months
It is recommended that you inspect and test your fire sprinkler system every six months. Fire sprinkler systems actually need little care and should last for the lifetime of your home.

Important: If your fire sprinkler system is monitored by a fire alarm service company, be sure to notify them before testing the system.

Five-Step Testing System
Main system control shutoff valve
Step One
Pressure gauge on main riser
Step Two
Close up of pressure gauge
Step Three
Inspector's test valve
Step Four
Fire sprinkler
Step Five
Cover plate
Step Five

Step One - Main System Control Shut-Off Valve
Locate the main system control shut-off valve. The shut-off valve is normally the domestic water supply line, located in or near the garage.

Step Two - Main Riser Location
Locate the main riser for the sprinkler system. The riser is normally in a cabinet on the wall of the garage.

Step Three - Main Riser Inspection
Inspect the main riser to assure that there is a water pressure. The pressure gauge should read between 50 psi and 100 psi. If the gauge reads either very low or no pressure at all, you should contact a licensed sprinkler contractor about repair.

Step Four - Inspector's Test Valve
Locate the inspector's test valve, which is usually outside on the rear wall of the house. Open the test valve slowly - water should come out. Listen for the alarm bell. Once the alarm bell sounds, turn off the valve. If the alarm bell does not sound, look to see if there is any obstruction in the bell. If there is no obstruction and the alarm still does not sound, contact a licensed fire sprinkler contractor.

Step Five - Interior Inspection
An interior inspection of your home should be conducted by looking at all the sprinkler heads. Look for any signs of leakage, items being hung from sprinkler heads, or damage to the sprinkler heads. If you have concealed sprinkler heads, check to ensure that the decorative cover plates are in place. If you find any damage or leakage, call a sprinkler contractor. If you find any objects being hung from the heads, remove them immediately.

For More Information
If you have questions regarding the inspection and testing of your sprinkler system, contact the Fontana Fire Prevention office at (909) 428-8890.