Firefighters need the right tools for the job. Portable fire pumps are a vital tool that increase the flow and pressure of a fire truck’s water supply.
Angus Fire offers petrol and diesel powered portable fire pumps for various firefighting applications. Locate a service partner to speak with a representative about your options.
Flow Rate and Pressure
Getting a fire pump into operation is one thing, but having enough water flow at the correct pressure is another. When a fire pump is properly sized for its intended use, it can provide sufficient water pressure to meet the demands of the system it’s being used in.
The fire pump size is typically based on the most hydraulically demanding area of the standpipe or sprinkler system, as well as any firefighting demands that may be present at the time. NFPA 20 requires that each fire pump have a churn rating and rated discharge pressure, which can be found on the pump’s nameplate or in its operating manual.
The churn rating is an important factor because it can help determine how much friction (pressure loss) is experienced when the pump is running at a given flow rate. The rated discharge pressure is what you can expect the pump to deliver at a given flow rate with a specified amount of head.
The design of a portable fire pump must ensure that it meets the demands for flow and pressure in real-world applications. They must also be light, compact and easy to maneuver so that they can easily fit into parking structures and other buildings or into the back of a fire truck.
Fire departments in urban areas often use portable fire pumps to supplement a water supply for structural firefighting. They may also deploy them at disaster sites to help manage fires caused by floodwaters or other natural occurrences.
A light and compact pump like the Black Panther 4 can be carried by one person or transported in a fire truck with ease. It also has an innovative body and engine designed to minimize noise and emissions. These pumps are ideal for wildland and home/cottage protection.
Fire pumps are used to boost the water supply for fire suppression systems such as fire sprinklers, standpipes and foam systems. They are also a critical component integrated into fire trucks and boats. Fire pump engines are most commonly gasoline or diesel engines, but some use steam turbines for more specialized applications such as refineries and chemical plants.
Fire pump manufacturers design their portable models with a single high-speed impeller drive to provide maximum pressure and flow in the smallest possible space. This increases reliability and reduces maintenance requirements.
The most common type of engine used in fire pumps is an automobile engine, because it provides a high power to weight ratio, light structure, convenient use and maintenance, and quick start. The engine powers a water supply system and a hand-lift frame. The heavier and larger models are designed to be hitched and towed by a motor vehicle. The lighter models are fitted with small wheels and simple carrying handles.
The fire pump and the electric motor or diesel engine that drives it are the heart of a facility’s fire suppression system. They must be in working order to keep the fire safe and protect your building’s occupants.
Regular inspections and maintenance can help ensure that your fire pump will be in good working order in an emergency. This includes lubricating moving parts and ensuring that the controller is functioning properly. Detailed record keeping is also important to help identify trends that may affect performance.
Before every use, check the fire pump to make sure that it is in working order and hoses are not damaged or cracked. In addition to checking the pump and hoses, it is also important to inspect the battery and make sure that the controller is functional and that there are no signs of damage. Depending on the type of pump, this may include a visual inspection, a no-flow test, and a flow test. If the mechanical seal is leaking, consider fitting an Aussie rejuvenation kit (available from Waterous).