Fire pump is a part of the fire sprinkler system’s water supply. When the pressure in sprinkler system risers and standpipes drops below a threshold, the fire pump starts to provide water flow at a higher pressure.
They are centrifugal pumps with high efficiency at transferring water over a wide range of flow and pressure. A Jockey pump is a small multistage centrifugal pump connected to a branch fire pipeline to maintain system pressure to a high level.
Fire pumps are needed when the local municipal water system cannot provide sufficient pressure to meet the hydraulic design requirements of the fire sprinkler system. This usually occurs if the building is very tall, such as in high-rise buildings, or in systems that require a relatively high terminal pressure at the fire sprinkler in order to provide a large volume of water, such as in storage warehouses. Fire pumps are also needed if fire protection water supply is provided from a ground-level water storage tank.
A fire pump is tested and listed for its use specifically for fire service by a third-party testing and listing agency, such as UL or FM Global. The main code that governs fire pump installations in North America is the National Fire Protection Association’s NFPA 20 Standard for the Installation of Stationary Fire Pumps for Fire Protection.
How Fire System Work
The fire pump starts when the pressure in the fire sprinkler system drops below a threshold. The sprinkler system pressure drops significantly when one or more fire sprinklers are exposed to heat above their design temperature, and opens, releasing water. Alternately, other fire hoses reels or other firefighting connections are opened, causing a pressure drop in the fire fighting main.