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RE: The importance of paying heed to those clearances and combustibles

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by firefighterjake, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    It's a small world . . .

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  2. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

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    Since the main consideration here is the stove, I wonder if one could install a simple one-head sprinkler overhead of the stove plumbed to the house water. Get it when the fire is still in an early incipient stage, it could be all you need for a stove-induced fired. Just a thought.
  3. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    Year ago when I installed my oil boiler the local firechief/inspector strongly urged me to install a spinkler head on the boiler feedwater line that ran above my oil furnace. I did and there is sits 20 year later. I dont recommend it but I have accidently whacked it a few times and no leaks or deluges. I dont have one over my wood boiler but the one of two relief valves is piped directly into the combuston chamber. Luckilly i havent experienced that letting loose either.
  4. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

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    It could probably be installed with a volume limiting device like a timer to minimize water damage when you are away, especially in the case of a malfunction.
  5. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Actually I've seen this a few times over oil boilers . . . and our former Fire Inspector did this very thing when he built his new home . . . actually he sprinkled his entire downstairs area . . . it's not a code compliant sprinkler system, but it beats having nothing in its place.
  6. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

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    Do you have any specifics on how it was done, what kind of heads, etc?
  7. DianeB

    DianeB Feeling the Heat

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    Jake - what is the best fire extinguisher for a home owner to buy to have handy?
  8. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    Dianeb, I do not mean to arrogate a response from Jake, but I did google a pretty good article online from This Old House.

    http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,560725,00.html

    The NFPA recommends at least one extinguisher per floor, and one every 75' (max) of travel distance.

    I have chosen to have more than these minimums, as I believe "the best" extinguisher is the one you have close at hand should you discover an incipient fire. Sizewise, the biggest you can readily handle is the better choice. Brandwise I don't have a big preference, but I try to invest in quality extinguishers that can be serviced and refilled.

    Cheers!
    DianeB likes this.
  9. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    DianeB likes this.
  10. DMbekus

    DMbekus New Member

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    You don’t need a whole house sprinkler system. I recently installed a stove in my basement and installed 2 sprinkler heads in the area of the stove and piping; the heads cost about 15 bucks for both, a couple lengths of copper and 1hr of time. There connected to the house water supply. If I hired a plumber maybe another $200, a very small price to pay for peace of mind.
    Granted most stoves are not in the basement with easily accessible piping, but many houses have the stoves on 1st floors with basements below, a wall mounted sprinkler head in the area of stove is not hard to do. Modern heads can have full flat white covers that can be painted to match the wall. Detectors are great and save more lives then get reported, but sprinklers are fire fighters ready to go 24/7
  11. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    I am curious, are these heads on a dead end leg off of the domestic water? I have seen/smelled the water from a dedicated fire sprinkler system, and would NEVER consider having a dead-ended (aka stagnant) branch line off of my domestic water lines.

    Maybe with a reduced pressure double back flow preventer valves, but certainly NOT without one.

    Cheers!
  12. DMbekus

    DMbekus New Member

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    yes for about 5'. A dedicated sprinkler system is a different animal then a potable water system. Millions of homes have outside water hose bibs that are not used for years and years are dead ends and do not cause problems, nor do they violate the building codes. I did install them with ¼ turn valves with bleeders, but left that off the original post so as not to complicate a simple thing. But if it is concern, simply looping the piping will address any issues.
  13. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    I don't really know . . . I know he used his domestic water supply . . . used some heads that he had from some sprinkler companies. It wasn't an "approved" system.
  14. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    ABC dry chemical . . . I prefer the ones with the metal tops vs. plastic tops . . . just because you can often recharge them if needed whereas the plastic topped ones may or may not be able to be recharged.

    That said . . . oftentimes it is cheaper and easier to just toss the extinguisher (or recycle it) and get a new one at the department store or hardware store.
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  15. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Well . . . yes and no. A partial system near the woodstove would help if that were to catch on fire . . . but it would do nothing if a fire breaks out in the kitchen (cooking fires are the leading cause of fires in the US) or somewhere else due to another cause (i.e. electrical fires are #2 or #3 in terms of fire cause . . . not to mention other possible causes in the home in other areas.)

    My own take on a partial system -- it's better than nothing, but not as good as a fully protected residence. That said . . . even a full sprinkler system in the house is no guarantee.

    Exhibit A:

    Attached Files:

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  16. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    Hard to see on my screen, is Exhibit A an iced structure from firefighting efforts...





    ...or an excessive amount of cream cheese frosting on a gingerbread house? :)

    (great, now I made myself hungry)

    Cheers!
  17. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    You'll have to trust me on this one . . . but it actually is an iced structure from firefighting efforts . . . I know this because at least one firefighter tried to lick the cream cheese "frosting" and ended up having to need the Jaws of Life to free him after his tongue got stuck to the ice.
  18. DMbekus

    DMbekus New Member

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    Don’t remember off hand, but ordered them online, simply teed off existing cooper line, installed ¼ turn valves with bleeder and secured to joists. It is not a designed or inspected system, nor is it a system. The right thing to do is have a design professional come in and design an entire system, get all proper permitting, get certified installers and sleep even better at night. I was just haunted by the story last year that killed a family because of improper ash disposal. I enjoy my stove, love my family and what I did made the most sense to me- with both meanings of the word ‘sense/cents’.
  19. DMbekus

    DMbekus New Member

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    found the heads. PexSupply.com

    Order Summary


    Item
    Price
    Qty
    Total
    [​IMG]
    Rough Brass Pendant Sprinkler Head - 155F

    SKU: 565115501 Brand: Globe Sprinkler
    $4.99
    2
    $9.98
    Subtotal:
    $9.98
    Shipping (UPS Ground):
    $8.61
    Tax:
    $0.00
    Order Total:
    $18.59
  20. Isaac Carlson

    Isaac Carlson New Member

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    It does not take much to start a fire. Air flow is a biggie. I use this to my advantage when starting fires in the stove. I set the wood in the stove just so and I don't need kindling, just light the wood and it will create a draft by itself and takes right off. I had a lighter explode in the car in the winter. I parked the car at work and when I came out for lunch, the lighter was in pieces all over the car.
  21. Woodrow

    Woodrow New Member

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    I remember riding as a passenger in a friend's 1971 Ford Torino, and all of a sudden - BANG! Bits of plastic and metal blasted out of one of the front windshield defrost ducts. Turns out someone had lost a disposable butane lighter down one of the ducts. My friend didn't smoke, so it was a mystery how long the lighter had been down there. But the heat from the defroster was enough to make it explode. After the lighter exploded, he instinctively ducked and swerved while he was driving along at ~60 mph on the highway. Fortunately we didn't hit anyone nor did he go off the road. And the plastic and metal shrapnel somehow avoided hitting us directly in the face. But wow, that was an unexpected shock. So much so, I remember it vividly 28 years later! Oh, and I don't recall if it was a classic Bic or some other type. I do recall "crickets" were popular back in the day too.
  22. Valhalla

    Valhalla Minister of Fire

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    Just like the tragic fire in Stamford, CT last year, the is no substitute for common sense!
  23. tfdchief

    tfdchief Minister of Fire

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    What a tragedy. Common sense? Yes, often times that is to blame, but make no mistake about it, we can all use common sense, heck even be almost paranoid about it, and still make a mistake. Sometimes it is just complacency. So, that is why we have to be reminded once in while. Thanks Jake for doing that. It makes me sick at my stomach every time a tragedy like this occurs, but maybe that in the back of our minds will save us from making a mistake someday. That is my prayer today.
    Tramontana likes this.
  24. Cross Cut Saw

    Cross Cut Saw Feeling the Heat

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    320603_10151374835198939_1444725009_n.jpg
    A friend of a friend just posted this picture on facebook, I attached a link to the article and told them they had WAY too much stuff WAY too close to that stove!
  25. tfdchief

    tfdchief Minister of Fire

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    CCS, Oh my. You need to call them before they have a fire.

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