What is a Standpipe System?

Standpipe systems are a series of pipes which connect a water supply to hose connections, basically an extension of the fire hydrant system. They are designed to provide a pre-piped water system for building occupants or the fire department. Standpipe systems are designed to provide fire protection water for hose lines in strategically placed locations inside a building or structure.

Some older buildings only have standpipe systems while many newer buildings will have a combination system, which supplies the fire sprinkler system and the standpipe system. They are most common in large floor area buildings, where most of the facility may be some distance from an outside entrance, and in multistory buildings to prevent long lengths of hose in stairwells and on the ground.

Types of Standpipe Systems

There are three classes of standpipe systems:

Class I – A Class I standpipe system shall provide a 2 1/2 inch hose connection for use primarily by trained personnel or by the fire department during initial response. This class has no hose attached. The fire department will usually carry hose packs to the floor level, typically a stairwell, where they will start their operations and connect to the standpipe system. These connections must match the hose thread utilized by the fire department.

Class II – A Class II standpipe system shall provide 1 1/2 inch hose stations to supply water for use primarily by trained personnel or by the fire department during initial response. These are typically found in cabinets with 100’ of hose.

Class III – A Class III standpipe system shall provide 1 1/2 inch hose stations to supply water for use by trained personnel and a 2 1/2 inch hose connection to supply a larger volume of water for use by fire departments and those trained in heavy fire streams. Many times these connections will provide a 2-1/2 inch reducer to a 1-1/2 hose connection.

NFPA 25 Compliance

All standpipe systems are required to be maintained in compliance with NFPA 25. The standard requires a weekly/monthly inspection of the control valves. A quarterly inspection of the pressure regulating devices, piping, and hose connections is required. An annual inspection of the cabinet, hose, and hose storage device is required. The alarm device, hose nozzle, and hose storage device shall be tested annually. The hose shall be tested every 3/5 years. The pressure control valves and pressure reducing valves shall be tested every 5 years. The standpipe system shall have a hydrostatic test, flow test, and main drain test every 5 years. The hydrostatic test is at 200 psi for 2 hours, or 50 psi in excess of the maximum working pressure.

Do you need to have your Standpipe System Inspected?

W & M Fire Protection is a licensed and insured fire suppression contractor. We provide inspections, service and maintenance that meet or exceed all National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) codes and standards. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions regarding your standpipe or fire sprinkler system.