We are working on an 8-unit, 4-story apartment building in the City of Chicago. It's an NFPA 13R system, with two units on each floor level. The entire building (all floor levels combined) is about 14,000 sqft.
Are floor-level control valves required?
Under NFPA 13R there doesn't appear to be a requirement for floor-level control valves like there is in an NFPA 13 system (NFPA 13-2016 220.127.116.11). Even still, in NFPA 13 still allows a single control valve and flow switch when the entire building is less than the system limits of 8.2.1 (52,000 sqft for a Light Hazard system).
Chicago has a Chicago Fire Prevention Code that requires "each floor and level of a building" with a separate control valve (15-16-400), but this and several other sections within the Fire Prevention Code apply only to NFPA 13 systems, not 13R systems.
Might be a shot in the dark but was curious if anyone has ran into this before. Thanks in advance.
Submitted anonymously and posted for discussion. Discuss This | Submit Your Question | Subscribe
8/26/2020 10:08:46 am
I actually just ran into this very same situation and Napa Fire department made us put floor controls. Seems that we should be able to use one riser as you mentioned since it was also a 13R system. Would love to get some more feedback on this if anyone can weigh in.
8/26/2020 10:21:52 am
I agree with the AHJ. They are over 3 stories which sometimes is too high for fire department apparatus access for exterior access.
8/26/2020 10:24:25 am
Can you provide the code section from NFPA-13R that requires the FCVA?
8/26/2020 10:34:21 am
If it is trying to avoid something that is code required, yes I'd see it as cutting corners. If it's not code required though, is a contractor expected to bid and provide something the owner doesn't want to pay for?
8/26/2020 10:39:14 am
If your 4 story building exceeds the 30’ above or below the fire department access and you are putting in a standpipe then you are required to have floor control per NFPA 14 -2019
8/26/2020 10:40:42 am
Good point - although not for this project. A standpipe isn't required by the adopted building code so NFPA 14 wouldn't apply.
8/26/2020 10:39:29 am
NFPA 13R Ed.2019 , include a new section.
8/26/2020 11:20:04 am
In the city I work, the individual FCVA requirement comes from a fire alarm requirement that every floor is to be monitored individually when the building is a high rise. (75 feet in NYC). So you you may have to look in the building code, but I would think you would be fine with just an alarm check valve at the incoming service.
Dat R. Huynh
8/27/2020 07:11:19 am
Here is my 2 cents....I am always provide floor control valve for any buildings (residential and commercial) with more than 2 stories and not counting the mezzanine for the purpose of testing and maintenance. As the system drain and refill will bring fresh oxygen to the system that would increase chance of corrosion inside the pipe. Drain down the entire system in a multi-stories building may also required fire watch too.
Leave a Reply.
Subscribe and learn something new each day:
Top May 2023 Contributors
Get 100 Days of Free Sample Questions right to you!
PE PREP SERIES