After all, in Ontario, retirement homes are required to have these in place in order to ensure the protection of those that live there. These systems can bring a variety of advantages for homeowners with regards to Alberta home insurance, as they help diminish the risk of a home being badly damaged after a fire.
But as the U.S.-based Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety indicates, some people may be hesitant to purchase a residence that’s installed with a sprinkler system, worried that they may malfunction and leave their belongings soaked with water when no fire risk was apparent.
This is one of several myths that the IBHS endeavors to put an end to.
According to the nonprofit, scientific research and communications organization, the notion that sprinkler systems have a tendency to accidentally go off is a flawed one.
“Records show that the likelihood of this occurring is very remote,” IBHS said. “In addition, residential fire sprinklers are designed and tested to minimize such accidents.”
Fire sprinkler systems have become more advanced
One of the ways they reduce accidents, IBHS points out, is by activating individually rather than all at once if the system detects a fire in one room. There is a mistaken belief that when one sprinkler goes off, they all do. But in reality, the sprinkler that’s closest to the first is the one that activates. And in the vast majority of cases, one sprinkler is enough to douse a fire, preventing it from spreading to other portions of the house.
Another commonly held belief that turns out to be false is that home sprinkler systems are expensive to install. Though the cost of labor and resources tends to vary, IBHS indicates that a report from the National Fire Protection Association suggests that it’s relatively affordable when compared to the other types of upgrades that are done.
For example, in NFPA’s Home Fire Sprinkler Cost Assessment report, the expense of installing home sprinkler system averages about $1.60 for every square foot of a residence. That’s about what it would cost to put in wall-to-wall carpeting or put a stone driveway in.
Fire sprinkler systems backed by safety officials and organizations
Julie Rochman, CEO and president of the IBHS, notes that whatever the expense of a sprinkler system may be, it’s ultimately priceless, as they can prevent someone from being severely hurt or at worse dying from a home fire.
“There is no disputing the fact that residential fire sprinklers can save lives and prevent significant property damage,” said Rochman.
She added that local lawmakers ought to protect the lives of all homeowners by requiring that new home be built with mandatory residential fire sprinklers.
A fervent supporter of residential fire sprinklers is the Alberta Fire Chiefs Association.
“I think the biggest benefit of having a sprinkler system in your home is you can go to sleep every night knowing that you’re doing the right thing for your family,” said Murray Pound, an Alberta home builder in a YouTube clip posted on AFCA’s website.
Pound added that he came to be a strong advocate for home sprinkler systems after a fire destroyed a property he and his workers had built several years ago. While no one was injured in the fire, the family that occupied the home went through a very difficult time with the rebuilding process. He stated that had the home been outfitted with a sprinkler system, the family could have been spared from emotional turmoil.