Sprinkler Head Cages for House

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ltuxl
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Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by ltuxl » Mon Nov 25, 2019 1:37 pm

I recently built a house and every room on every floor has sprinkler heads that are sticking out of the ceiling. With just my wife and I there wasn't a second thought about leaving them alone. That said, we recently had a baby and I am envisioning multiple scenarios where in the future a pillow, football, Nerf gun bullet, etc. go flying into one of the fragile sprinkler heads causing a deluge of water... These concerns have me looking into sprinkler head cages.

The sprinkler heads I am considering are the "Happy Tree (2 Pack) White Fire Sprinkler Head Guard for Both 1/2" & 3/4" Sprinkler Head for Protecting Flush Mount & Side Wall & Semi" from Amazon.com. They should do the job without obstructing water flow in the even of an actual fire.

As with most things I like consulting the Bogleheads community for pros and cons. Does anyone have experience with these? Would you recommend sprinkler cages in general? Do you have any things I should consider before installing?

Thanks in advance,

Tux
- Mr. Tux

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RickBoglehead
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by RickBoglehead » Mon Nov 25, 2019 1:48 pm

First, consulting this forum for something as specialized as this makes little sense to me. There are specialized forums, and manufacturer sites. https://nfsa.org/ Check with your manufacturer also.

Second, you should check into your sprinkler system more carefully. I am of the opinion that your system should be DRY, gets water only when a head signals it.

Lastly, nerfs and pillows are not going to activate it. A football, i.e. a real football, might be a concern. Put a cage over the one in the football room... :shock:
Avid user of forums on variety of interests-financial, home brewing, F-150, PHEV, home repair, etc. Enjoy learning & passing on knowledge. It's PRINCIPAL, not PRINCIPLE. I ADVISE you to seek ADVICE.

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dm200
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by dm200 » Mon Nov 25, 2019 2:15 pm

ltuxl wrote:
Mon Nov 25, 2019 1:37 pm
I recently built a house and every room on every floor has sprinkler heads that are sticking out of the ceiling. With just my wife and I there wasn't a second thought about leaving them alone. That said, we recently had a baby and I am envisioning multiple scenarios where in the future a pillow, football, Nerf gun bullet, etc. go flying into one of the fragile sprinkler heads causing a deluge of water... These concerns have me looking into sprinkler head cages.
The sprinkler heads I am considering are the "Happy Tree (2 Pack) White Fire Sprinkler Head Guard for Both 1/2" & 3/4" Sprinkler Head for Protecting Flush Mount & Side Wall & Semi" from Amazon.com. They should do the job without obstructing water flow in the even of an actual fire.
As with most things I like consulting the Bogleheads community for pros and cons. Does anyone have experience with these? Would you recommend sprinkler cages in general? Do you have any things I should consider before installing?
Thanks in advance,
Tux
No experience with such sprinkler heads - but experience with our son - now grown. Your concerns are, in my opinion and experience, very real. I suspect those sprinkler heads are very visible and apparent - and will draw a child's attention - and become a "target" of various types - perhaps even hanging stuff from the sprinkler head.

I believe such risks are much higher with little boys than little girls - but equality is catching up quickly.

neilpilot
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by neilpilot » Mon Nov 25, 2019 2:29 pm

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Nov 25, 2019 1:48 pm

Second, you should check into your sprinkler system more carefully. I am of the opinion that your system should be DRY, gets water only when a head signals it.

A dry system doesn't normally lessen the concern that a if a head is dislodged water damage could result. A dry system simply means that air or nitrogen pressure is maintained between the sprinkler heads and a shuttle valve that will release water into the system. So if you break a head off, the gas pressure is released and the shuttle floods the system with water.

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NavyIC3
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by NavyIC3 » Mon Nov 25, 2019 2:33 pm

Second, you should check into your sprinkler system more carefully. I am of the opinion that your system should be DRY, gets water only when a head signals it.

Lastly, nerfs and pillows are not going to activate it. A football, i.e. a real football, might be a concern. Put a cage over the one in the football room... :shock:
[/quote]


I'd be very surprised if this were a dry system. Dry systems require air compressors and are more complicated than wet systems. They are installed in areas where temperatures get below freezing. Also I do not agree that a pillow can not activate the system. Sprinkler heads are fragile especially the type with ampules.

flarf
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by flarf » Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:07 pm

I'd ask your builder why they didn't use concealed heads. All you would see is a disc that sits flush with the ceiling.

Retrofitting them would certainly be possible, just a question of expense. If switching to concealed heads isn't feasible, I'd directly inquire with the sprinkler subcontractor that installed your system about cages -- they may have something a bit more rigid than the ones in the OP, which appear to only screw into the surrounding drywall.

HomeStretch
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by HomeStretch » Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:13 pm

Consider running the cage you propose to install by the sprinkler system installer and local fire department to insure it will not interfere with the system operation.

TLC1957
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by TLC1957 » Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:30 pm

The sprinkler cage MUST be UL listed for the sprinkler used in the system. Contact the manufacturer of the fire sprinkler and or sprinkler contractor for guidance. A cage not listed for the sprinkler can result in the spray pattern to be disrupted and not control or extinguisher the fire. The sprinkler system was installed as per NFPA 13D for residential occupancy and is a wet system meaning adequate heat must be maintained in the home to prevent freezing.

I worked in insurance loss prevention dealing with sprinkler systems on a daily bases for 36 years and I am a volunteer firefighter.

Hope this helps.

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dm200
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by dm200 » Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:09 pm

flarf wrote:
Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:07 pm
I'd ask your builder why they didn't use concealed heads. All you would see is a disc that sits flush with the ceiling.
Retrofitting them would certainly be possible, just a question of expense. If switching to concealed heads isn't feasible, I'd directly inquire with the sprinkler subcontractor that installed your system about cages -- they may have something a bit more rigid than the ones in the OP, which appear to only screw into the surrounding drywall.
Ah, yes. Maybe these concealed heads is why I do not notice sprinkler heads in newly constructed buildings and homes.

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ltuxl
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Re: Sprinkler Head Cages for House

Post by ltuxl » Mon Dec 02, 2019 7:47 am

Thanks everyone for your replies. My sprinkler system is definitely charged (read not dry).
TLC1957 wrote:
Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:30 pm
The sprinkler cage MUST be UL listed for the sprinkler used in the system. Contact the manufacturer of the fire sprinkler and or sprinkler contractor for guidance. A cage not listed for the sprinkler can result in the spray pattern to be disrupted and not control or extinguisher the fire. The sprinkler system was installed as per NFPA 13D for residential occupancy and is a wet system meaning adequate heat must be maintained in the home to prevent freezing.

I worked in insurance loss prevention dealing with sprinkler systems on a daily bases for 36 years and I am a volunteer firefighter.

Hope this helps.
Thanks for the info. I will be reaching out to the manufacturer or contractor to get more information.

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Nov 25, 2019 1:48 pm
First, consulting this forum for something as specialized as this makes little sense to me. There are specialized forums, and manufacturer sites. https://nfsa.org/ Check with your manufacturer also.

Second, you should check into your sprinkler system more carefully. I am of the opinion that your system should be DRY, gets water only when a head signals it.

Lastly, nerfs and pillows are not going to activate it. A football, i.e. a real football, might be a concern. Put a cage over the one in the football room... :shock:
Would you recommend this for my cricket room as well? :D
- Mr. Tux

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