Piping Configurations

$ 1.00

Continuing Education Units (CEU): 0.10

Expected Duration: 1 Hour

This self-paced online course explains different configurations of piping systems that can be used in sprinkler system designs. The exact size and layout of the piping depends on the site- specific needs and objectives of the system.

Upon completion you should be able to:

  • Identify the document that contains the requirements for piping requirements and allowances relative to sprinkler protection
  • Explain some of the historical development of sprinkler standards
  • Define key design concepts, including pipe schedule, hydraulic design and hydraulically calculated
  • Explain how pipe schedule systems and hydraulically designed systems work and the advantages and disadvantages of each
  • Explain the water supply requirements for pipe schedule systems
  • List the limitations of installing pipe schedule systems per the standard
  • Define and explain tree, gridded and looped piping systems
  • List and explain the methods used to join sprinkler piping in a system
  • Explain where to find the requirements for the type of piping that can be used in sprinkler systems
  • Explain how grooved piping and couplings work
  • Define key installation concepts, including brazing, soldering and welding

Who Will Benefit

Anyone whose job involves designing, reviewing, evaluating or installing fire protection systems, including: designers, installers, engineers, electrical contractors, technicians, project managers, fire marshals, and architects.

Course Summary

  • Sprinkler system piping is the obvious key to getting water on a fire in a building. Systems using pipe were introduced in the middle of the 1800s and have had only a couple of extreme modifications since then.
  • Original sprinkler piping uniformity and standard installation practices were first developed in 1896. Frederick Grinnell held an organizational meeting with a number of insurance underwriters and some engineers to develop consensus on sprinkler system installation. From this meeting, NFPA was born, and the sprinkler standard was first published soon thereafter.
  • Early systems were pipe schedule, which means that a specific number of sprinklers were placed on pipes of certain diameters, and the system "grew" like a tree. Schedules for piping were based on the occupancy hazard. The higher the hazard, the fewer sprinklers places on specific diameter pipe. The lower the hazard, the smaller the piping. Also, sprinklers were spaced more closely to achieve more water flow in a given area, as the hazard of the space increased.
  • Early pipe schedule systems used end lines that were only 3/4-inch in diameter. Pipes with this diameter were not allowed in system installation beginning in 1940.
  • Beginning in the 1970s, the increasing use of computer systems significantly changed the piping patterns used in sprinkler system design and allowed more concise calculation of existing systems. Piping was designed and sized to more efficiently deliver water to the sprinkler- protected areas, based on scientific data concerning flow and friction loss. Systems developed using modern design software use more consistent pipe sizing, and can be developed as loops and grids, which make water delivery more consistent and effective.