Anyone dealing with tech on a daily basis needs to understand the benefits of data center fire suppression. A facility manager for these centers needs to understand the purpose of these systems, how they help their business, the items included in a typical system, and what kind of suppression agent they should choose for their system.

In this way, they can create data center fire suppression that protects their precious information from total loss. Remember, a data center fire suppression system should be the first step in protecting your center but not the last.

Containment and Commissioning

A data center fire suppression system is designed to contain a fire and keep it from spreading through your data center facility. It will automatically turn on when it detects smoke, fire, or excessive heat. Once it turns on, it will spread its suppression agent fully to ensure that the potentially destructive fire goes out without spreading any further.

For a delicate data center, fire suppression can be a tricky business. It takes a series of careful decisions to decide what type of suppression agents to install and what kind of system to purchase. However, the advantage of installing this kind of system far outweighs the difficulties or disadvantages.

Business Outcomes

So why do you need data center fire suppression? There are several obvious reasons to include one of these systems in your business. In fact, most data center managers will tell you that failure to install a data center fire suppression system is a major business mistake.

For example, there are many incredible benefits to adding one of these systems to your data center. Just a few of these advantages include the ways that they can:

  • Protect your center from total loss in a fire
  • Contain small fires to a localized area
  • Avoid data loss if a system gets too warm
  • Decrease your insurance payments
  • Give you the peace of mind to know your system is protected

While a data center fire suppression system will cost thousands of dollars to install, it is a worthwhile business investment. First of all, it will provide you with a protection system that ensures your data won’t get lost or partially damaged in any serious fire. This protection will keep you from having to hire expensive data restoration services after a fire.

It can also serve as a useful item to highlight when trying to find potential clients. A data center with fire suppression will be more attractive and high-sought than one without. Increasing your safety in this way also ensures that your current customers are satisfied with their services.

Things Included

When you purchase data center fire suppression, you are getting a system that is made up of multiple items. We will outline a few of these below to give you an idea of the expansiveness of fire suppression and what you need to invest in when you purchase it.

1. Alarms

Fire suppression alarms will warn everyone in your data center that fire is occurring. These signals help to speed up evacuation and avoid the potential of lost lives. Most importantly, it can also serve as a warning for the detection systems that operate the suppression system.

2. Detection Systems

These systems are designed to detect evidence of a fire and to kick the suppression system on immediately. Typically, they are installed on the ceiling of the data center. The reason for this installation location is because fire and smoke both rise, creating the potential for earlier detection.

3. Delivery Systems

Each suppression system comes with its type of delivery system for its suppression agent. These are usually a pipe-based system that runs along the ceiling. From here, they can drop the suppression agent on your data center computers and protect them from further damage.

4. Portable Fire Extinguishers

To help speed up the fire suppression in your data center, most systems come with portable fire extinguishers. These are necessary if the overhead system somehow misses an area of fire and you need to take suppression into your own hands.

5. Emergency Power-Off Switch

Installing a power-off switch will help to turn all the electricity off in your data center and avoid electrical fires. That danger is more likely to spread seriously dangerous fires or fry your circuit board and make data restoration impossible.

fire alarm and smoke

Selecting the Right Suppression Agent

There are many different types of suppression agents you can choose for data center fire suppression. We will explore these options in more depth below to give you an insight into which is the right choice for your data center and which will protect you the most effectively.

Water Suppression

Wet data center fire suppression will pair with a water-based system as a way of delivering a variety of suppression agents. The trickiest thing about these systems is that they may threaten the integrity of your data storage computers. However, they are usually the least expensive, easiest to install, and most efficient options available.

Dry Pipe

A dry pipe system will use a variety of dry fire suppression agents to put out your fire. They have the benefit of not damaging your computers and being very effective. However, they are a little harder to spread than water can be more expensive to install. If you need data center fire suppression and money is not a problem, this is a great choice.

Gaseous Agents

Another choice that many are choosing for data center fire suppression is gas. Gas has the advantage of being less expensive than a dry pipe. It also has an easier dispersal method once it is released. However, it tends to be the slowest moving medium for fire suppression. Many data center managers consider it a good middle ground between wet and dry pipes.

Making the Final Choice

By now, you should have a pretty good idea of what type of data center fire suppression you want in your center. Do you think that a dry system would be the best for you? That’s probably not a bad idea. After all, a wet method may be more efficient at putting out fires but can threaten your computers. That said, there are many other considerations when choosing a system for your building.

So take the time to talk to your fire specialists and your management team before making a decision. While you should make a decision and install data center fire suppression as soon as possible, you shouldn’t rush into a decision. Weighing all of your options help you make the wisest choice. It will also protect your precious data investment and business.

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