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Is your refrigerator safe?

RayWohlfarth
RayWohlfarth Member Posts: 954
I was doing research for my newsletter and found the cause of the horrible fire at Greenfell Tower which killed 80 people was due to a refrigerator. This video shows the unit completely burning in less than a minute.
http:/dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4634612/Video-shows-British-style-fridge-flames.html
This other article discusses the dangers of refrigerators with flammable refrigerants. I have one of these.
http:/acr-news.com/are-our-fridges-safe
Ray Wohlfarth
Boiler Lessons

Comments

  • Terry O
    Terry O Member Posts: 67
    Ray, the article link doesn't work... can you repost?

    http:/acr-news.com/are-our-fridges-safe
    Terry O
  • Erin Holohan Haskell
    Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 1,865
    edited July 2017
    Thanks, Ray. Here's the link, Terry - http://www.acr-news.com/are-our-fridges-safe?
    President
    HeatingHelp.com
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,866
    I don't know about yours, but mine are safe, yep.
    Flammable refrigerant and all.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 15,349
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,765
    No fire sprinkler system in a building that tall?
  • RayWohlfarth
    RayWohlfarth Member Posts: 954
    No sprinklers in the building Thats kinda scary. They had a bad fire in hotel in Hawaii over the weekend they had no sprinklers either
    Ray Wohlfarth
    Boiler Lessons
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    Sprinklers Was not code when built in Hawaii.

    Most of the reason for the quick spread of the uk fire was due to the assembly of a recent exterior renovation. The skin had no fire blocking, and acted like a chimney.
    Zman
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,866
    Gordy said:

    Sprinklers Was not code when built in Hawaii.



    Most of the reason for the quick spread of the uk fire was due to the assembly of a recent exterior renovation. The skin had no fire blocking, and acted like a chimney.

    So essentially,
    Refrigerators should have a metal shell, at least to enclose the spray foam. And buildings need fire blocking, something we've known for what, 100 years or more?

    Sprinklers are expensive, until you need them.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    ZmanCanucker
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    Yes you are correct Chris. However would you go to the extra expense to put a sprinkler system in your home if it was not code?


    Fire blocking was actually not even dealt with until the 60's let alone code.

    The cladding that was installed on several high rises in question now in the U.K.

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/dk-composite-inferno-graphic.jpg?strip=all&w=536&quality=100
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,866
    Gordy said:

    Yes you are correct Chris. However would you go to the extra expense to put a sprinkler system in your home if it was not code?


    Fire blocking was actually not even dealt with until the 60's let alone code.

    The cladding that was installed on several high rises in question now in the U.K.

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/dk-composite-inferno-graphic.jpg?strip=all&w=536&quality=100

    Just because something isn't, or wasn't code doesn't mean it wasn't done.

    Would I install a sprinkler system in my house if I was building from scratch? Good chance, yeah. I would also like steel framing.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,765
    Why the steel framing? Sounds cold to me.
    Gordy
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    Good conductor.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,866
    JUGHNE said:

    Why the steel framing? Sounds cold to me.

    Because I like it.

    ;)
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,765
    Fine, then! B)
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    edited July 2017
    SIP.
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    ChrisJ said:

    Gordy said:

    Yes you are correct Chris. However would you go to the extra expense to put a sprinkler system in your home if it was not code?


    Fire blocking was actually not even dealt with until the 60's let alone code.

    The cladding that was installed on several high rises in question now in the U.K.

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/dk-composite-inferno-graphic.jpg?strip=all&w=536&quality=100

    Just because something isn't, or wasn't code doesn't mean it wasn't done.

    Would I install a sprinkler system in my house if I was building from scratch? Good chance, yeah. I would also like steel framing.
    There would be a good chance you wouldn't insulate. Let alone install a sprinkler system. If it were not code. If it's coming out of your wallet. :p

    Usually residential code follows commercial code requirements in slow succession.

    Most mistake residential structural blocking reinforcement. AKA solid bridging in walls, and floors as fire stop in older residential dwellings. Although location details are similar it was not installed as fire blocking in its context.


    We can all say it would be a good idea, and a prudent safety precaution. However the mighty investment dollar over rules the lack of such written, and enforced code authority.

    Just so everyone is aware. Most sprinkler systems are designed to slow fire spread not extinguish it. The fire department does not even expect that much.

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 16,327
    Residential sprinklers often extinguish the fire before it spreads, like over a sleeping smoker on a couch :)

    A very high success rate with residential systems and the Uponor pex systems make it fairly affordable.

    I installed a single head in the room with my wood boiler, on the potable water system.

    The trick with resi systems is supplying enough gpm. The basic code we worked with required proving two heads flowing.

    Homes in the trees required 4 head flowing outside, that takes a lot of flow and pipe size. Plus a large meter set, gets $$.

    We installed copper systems, then CPVC, if I were still in that business, probably pex would be the product I'd look at.


    http://www.nfpa.org/public-education/by-topic/fire-and-life-safety-equipment/home-fire-sprinklers
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    Most multi sprinkler head layouts are designed to cover escape routes from sleeping areas to safely exit the dwelling as a minimum.
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    I'll never forget witnessing how quickly a home can become fully engulfed on a windy day. Especially a drywall ,fibreglass cavity insulation, exterior foam board, vinyl siding wall detail. 15 min. Tops.

    Vehicle in garage started fire.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,765
    It is rumored that in the future fire dept will be discouraged from doing "interior" attacks. That is 2 fighters geared up with air packs and 1 1/2" to 2" hose with pressure near 100PSI. 2 others outside at the door ready to go in if needed.
    The "new" method may be to attack thru windows and doors with water stream. Could lead to a total gut burn out of structure.
    Main reason being (IMO) is the materials in a newer home.
    Manufactured floor joists held together with glue/plywood/chip board sheeted with chip board burn thru quickly compared to 2 x 10 lumber covered with plywood or 3/4" lumber.
    Roof trusses held together with glue and press plates.
    All amounting to kindling/twigs compared to solid lumber components.
    All house furnishings, rugs, drapes, furniture, clothes, kids toys etc are some form of poly/plastic, somewhat like gas burning.
    It is now common to climb onto the roofs and saw a hole to vent the heat/smoke out, that will probably be limited because of roof structures becoming more susceptible to burn thru caused by the fuel contained inside the house.

    So smoke detectors are stressed to be installed and then get out of the house quickly.
    Sprinklers could prevent many small fires from going bigger. IMO
    Canucker
  • Canucker
    Canucker Member Posts: 713
    > @hot rod said:
    > Residential sprinklers often extinguish the fire before it spreads, like over a sleeping smoker on a couch :)
    >
    > A very high success rate with residential systems and the Uponor pex systems make it fairly affordable.
    >
    > I installed a single head in the room with my wood boiler, on the potable water system.
    >
    > The trick with resi systems is supplying enough gpm. The basic code we worked with required proving two heads flowing.
    >
    > Homes in the trees required 4 head flowing outside, that takes a lot of flow and pipe size. Plus a large meter set, gets $$.
    >
    > We installed copper systems, then CPVC, if I were still in that business, probably pex would be the product I'd look at.
    >
    >
    > http://www.nfpa.org/public-education/by-topic/fire-and-life-safety-equipment/home-fire-sprinklers

    I'm assuming that you have a backflow preventer connected? I've never installed a sprinkler system and I couldn't tell you the requirements but I have seen the water that comes out when a forklift rips one of the heads off. Wouldn't want to be drinking that.
    You can have it good, fast or cheap. Pick two
  • Harvey Ramer
    Harvey Ramer Member Posts: 2,221
    I wonder if it would be feasible to pump a house full of an inert gas to displace the oxygen and then attack flames from the outside with water? Of course all occupant would have to be vacated first.
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    Fire dept around here won't go into a home known to have TJI, or BCI floor joists unless there is a need for occupant rescue. No meat In them just plywood, wood chips and glue.

    I have done super air sealing for a server room at a local college. They converted from a dry system to inert gas as the extinguishing agent. The server room had to basically hold an X concentration of the inert gas for 10 min. Doesn't sound like a long time, but it is.

    The server room was approximately 50x50. With 12' grid ceiling. All tiles were Gasketed. It was a pain, but it passed on first test. The gentleman who performed the test for the suppression system said he never had one pass on the first test.

    The server room also had a drop floor for cooling, and running cables. Pic attatched.

    Depending on the gas, and intensity of the fire. It would be near impossible to have the concentrations needed to use even in a tight envelope.


  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,765
    The commercial grade sprinkler systems I have seen were typically piped in black steel pipe. Definitely back flow devices installed.
    The water in them looks like it came out of the bottom of a steamer.
    They have some testing flush valves going to mech room floor drains or mostly here they go outside if possible.
    The side of one building has the obvious staining from testing/flushing. In that case they could have piped it lower than the 4' height to avoid that.......but some sprinkler installers do what they want. That particular installer crew considered themselves the only true trade on the job. :s
    Canucker
  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,185
    ISTR that the Upnor resi stuff was listed to go inline on the domestic lines. That'd keep it from stagnating.

    Some of the stuff that comes out of sprinkler standpipes looks like it would burn!

    JUGHNECanucker