It is generally assumed that if a fire breaks out, the fire trucks are the first responders to fight the fire at the fire scene. But fire trucks do have major limitations, one of which is that the water in their tanks can only be used to fight smaller fires. Therefore, external water resources are indispensable for fighting bigger fires. Modern high-rise buildings are facilitated with wet risers and hydrant valves, which are constantly charged with a pressurized water supply.
The first tool responding immediately to an initial fire before fire trucks arrive can be the hydrant valve, which ensures a steady and secure water supply from underground water sources.
Landing or Hydrant Valves?
Landing valves and fire hydrant valves are very much alike, regardless of how and where they are installed. Both are designed and manufactured in a robust way that enables them to endure tough environments and extreme weather conditions. To be more specific, “landing valves” are, for the purpose of firefighting, the valves installed on wet risers at each staircase landing in the building, from where such valves are installed the fire crew can lay out the fire hose to fight a fire on that floor.
In this sense, these valves must be made compact to avoid any obstruction of the passage around the limited space where they are installed. In addition, to produce varying water output, landing valves not only come in different shapes and sizes but can also be installed in different ways at high or low altitudes.
Typically, firefighting water supply systems used for municipal or industrial purposes are hydrant systems, in which the valves fitted on the hydrant standposts are called “hydrant valves”.
How do Hydrant Valves work?
Considered the major tools for active fire protection, hydrants are commonly used for supplying water from pipelines and water distribution system. With a coupling connected to a hose and a branch pipe on it, a hydrant is purposely designed for providing adequate water supply as fast as possible. Such a fast, secure water supply is a key factor in successfully extinguishing a fire on the fireground. Better yet, it is easy to use. Simply turn the landing valve handle of the wet riser counterclockwise, and you can activate the fire hydrant system.
Hydrant Valves Applications
There are a wide variety of hydrant valve applications in place, ranging from commercial establishments to national infrastructures. These include, for instance, (high-rise) buildings, airports, offshore platforms, commercial establishments (malls, IT parks, industrial parks, institutions, etc.), large warehouses, chemical industry, textile/garment industry, petrochemicals & refineries, and so on.
Types of hydrant valves
It is obvious that your specific needs determine what type of hydrant valves suit you best, for example, Oblique, Bib-Nose, Straight, or Right-angle patterns. Other decisive factors include their applications, water extraction, etc. Not surprisingly, you can even get quality pressure reducing hydrants at MAFO at reasonable prices.
As for underground hydrants, they are often used in congested urban areas or extremely cold places on earth where frozen above-ground hydrants occur. They are also suitable for certain facilities such as airfields, where normal hydrants are unlikely to be installed.
Approvals on MAFCO Hydrant Valves
All hydrant valves at MAFCO are approved by Kltemark, FM (International), or both. FM-approved items include oblique/bib-nose pattern valves with flanged/threaded inlets and pressure reducing valves with flanged/threaded inlets. Hydrant valves in particular are approved by Kltemark and FM (International). Even the single/double outlet landing valves are approved by BSI.
To make hydrant valves last longer, it is important to ensure a proper operation of them, which can be achieved by acquainting operators with the basics of operating the hydrant, such as how to open and close it correctly. For example, the hydrant valves need to be opened and closed slowly to avoid water hammer and other safety issues that may put operators and other equipment in harm’s way. It should also be noted that overtightening of the hydrant may damage the threads, bonnet, or main valve seat, resulting in a malfunction of the hydrant body.
Maintenance of Hydrants Valves
A quality hydrant valve requires little maintenance. Normal operation can be ensured by only proper periodic cleaning and light greasing of stud threads and the lug. Consumable parts, i.e., the rubber washer (hydrant outlet), seat washer, and gland packing, can be replaced easily with standard items.
Future of Hydrant Valves
The fire hydrants have a long way to go before they can be taken out of service for good in the fire protection field. As long as water is considered the most cost-effective fire suppressant, the fire hydrants will exist as the most cost-effective tool to supply water. Therefore, MAFCO will keep manufacturing quality hydrant valves to meet the global demands when fire departments and taxpayers show growing awareness of quality fire protection products as the vital asset to their lives and property.