The Benefits of a Diesel Driven Fire Pump
A diesel driven fire pump is a standby power source for fire water supply systems in high-rise buildings where normal power is not available. Its main purpose is to provide water for the emergency stairways in the event of a fire, but it can also be used for the sprinkler system and hose line.
Unlike electrical motors used for most electric pumps, the driver of a diesel fire pump must be capable of running under severe operating conditions and it must meet strict requirements. For example, the driver must be capable of operating under full load for up to eight hours without destruction. The engine must be designed to shut down on overspeed, low lubrication oil pressure and optionally, on high temperature. The engine must be listed for fire protection service and it must meet local air-quality management regulations for diesel fuel.
Diesel drivers have a long history in the fire industry and are very reliable and easy to maintain because of their split casing design that allows for quick access for maintenance. They are economical, and they can be supplied with a diesel generator or with dedicated power from an emergency transformer meeting Article 695 of NFPA 20. The piping from the exhaust system should be properly sized to ensure that back pressure does not exceed the listing of the driver, and it should be well insulated and guarded.
The fuel tank for the diesel fire pump must be sized for up to eight hours of operation. It must be located inside the fire pump room to maintain a constant temperature, and it should be cleaned on a regular basis. In addition, the fuel tank should be tested on a routine basis to ensure that it is in good working condition.