Imagine this scenario… It’s Sunday morning 2am, and your server room has a circuit board short and overheat causing a fire to break out. The sprinkler system will activate only when the temperature at the head reaches a level that is beyond “contained”, and your equipment and data are completely destroyed. Your sprinkler system will have worked exactly as designed, which is to protect the structure of the building.
If a gaseous fire suppression system was also present, the fire would have been detected in its earliest stages and the system automatically would have extinguished the fire with almost no equipment damage. In fact, it is often challenging to find where the fire was after a system extinguishes it since the fire never had an opportunity to grow beyond its earliest stage.
Keep in mind a sprinkler system is only designed to protect your structure, not its contents. The water damage from a sprinkler system can do more harm than the actual fire itself.
When rationalizing the expense involved in installing a suppression system, it is important to consider not only the high value physical equipment in the server room that is being protected, but also the downtime while the infrastructure is rebuilt.
Watch this video if you want to see a comparison of a fire suppressed by a sprinkler system (that works exactly as it was intended) compared to fire extinguished by a gaseous fire suppression system. – SEE FM 200 video on our website