Home fire sprinkler safety tips

Approximately 80 percent of fire deaths occur at home. Home fire sprinklers can save lives and property from fire. They respond quickly and effectively to fire, often extinguishing the fire before the fire department arrives. Only the sprinkler closest to the fire will activate, spraying water on the fire.

  • Home fire sprinklers save lives and property. Sprinklers can reduce your risk of dying by 80 percent during a fire, and can reduce the risk of property loss by 70 percent during a fire.  
  • The cost of a home fire sprinkler installation in a new home averages $1.35 per sprinklered square foot, an amount often less than what is spent for carpet upgrades, paving stone driveways, or a whirlpool bath. Source: Home Fire Sprinkler Cost Assessment report
  • Home fire sprinklers can reduce a homeowner’s insurance premium.
  • Fire departments typically use roughly 10 times as much water as a fire sprinkler would use to contain a fire.
  • Fire sprinklers are environmentally friendly. They can reduce the amount of water run-off and pollution, fire damage by up to 97 percent, and water usage to fight a home fire by as much as 90 percent.
  • Cigarette or cigar smoke or burnt toast will not activate a fire sprinkler. Only the high temperature of a fire will activate the sprinkler.
  • Home fire sprinklers are easy to maintain. Inspect your home to make sure the sprinklers are not blocked by something that would prevent the water from discharging, such as paint, and be sure the main control valve is never turned off.
  • Home fire sprinklers are effective in cold and warm climates. Guidelines have been created for proper installation to avoid pipes freezing.  

NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative outlines proven, effective ways that home fire sprinkler advocates can communicate the impact of sprinklers to their decision makers. Visit the initiative's site for free resources for the fire service and other sprinkler advocates, including fact sheets, videos, a free monthly newsletter, research, and our Faces of Fire Campaign, which features real people demonstrating the need for home fire sprinklers.


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The Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition (HFSC) is a leading resource for accurate, noncommercial information and materials about home fire sprinklers for consumers, the fire service, builders, and other professionals.