Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Standard Response VS. Quick Response Fire Sprinkler Heads: What's the Difference?

Bison Fire's Rapid VS Regular response sprinkler heads

A critical component of any fire protection system are the fire sprinklers that automatically discharge water when they detect a fire, or when the temperature in the area exceeds a predetermined temperature.

But did you know that there are different kinds of sprinkler heads to choose from that are specific to your environment? It’s true! However, knowing which kind suits your needs can be confusing, so today we’re going to break down what you need to know about Standard Response vs. Quick Response fire sprinkler heads.

Let’s dive right in:

Getting Started: Fire Sprinkler Characteristics


An extinguisher’s ability to control or extinguish a fire is based on 6 core characteristics, which are:

  • Water distribution characteristics
  • Special service condition
  • Orifice size
  • Temperature rating
  • Thermal sensitivity
  • Installation orientation

The Two Main Types of Sprinkler Heads

Standard Response Fire Sprinkler Heads

The style wets and cools an area surrounding a fire, and suppresses the source of the fire and slows the spread of flames. This style of fire sprinkler head is activated individually, and will only become active if it is located directly above a fire.

Because this type is so precise, they’re typically best suited for commercial or industrial buildings like factories and warehouses.

Quick Response Fire Sprinkler Head

Quick response fire sprinkler heads discharge water from higher up on the ceiling which cools the area in order to prevent a fire from rising. This style of sprinkler head is especially useful for helping people evacuate from the area and survive fires, since they help prevent flash-over.

Generally this style are installed to suppress fires in high-density areas like offices, schools, healthcare facilities, and assisted care facilities. 

Standard vs. Quick Response Fire Sprinkler Heads: What’s the Difference?

The biggest difference between these two styles is the activation temperature. While a quick response (as the name implies) will activate more quickly due to its increased sensitivity, a standard response fire sprinkler head often requires a higher temperature in order to activate.

Additionally, the two styles look different: a standard response fire sprinkler head has a 5mm glass bulb, whereas a quick response fire sprinkler head has a 3mm one. It’s this difference in bulb size which acts as differentiator: the smaller bulbs increase thermal responsiveness, meaning the quick response triggers more quickly.

Which Fire Extinguisher Head is Right For You?

When choosing the right fire extinguisher heads, consider these key factors:

  • Area size to be protected
  • Ambient temperature throughout the year
  • Ceiling height

These elements will help you determine whether a quick response fire sprinkler head or a standard response fire sprinkler head is the right choice. For instance, quick response fire extinguisher heads are better suited for taller buildings, or smaller areas. 

If you still have questions, get in touch! Your Bison Fire Protection technician is happy to help you make the right choice for your business. Contact us today by calling 866-441-3473 today to provide qualified and professional fire safety services in Winnipeg, Brandon, Thompson, Kenora, Saskatoon, and Regina.

Posted by Rob Read at 9:01 AM

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