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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
the town is requiring these 3unit town houses to be sprinkled. Each has a separate 200a panel with a 3 bank meter stack to feed each unit. The houses will have their own individual pumps with a storage tank. Is it required to have a separate service for these pumps? So the owner would have 2 meters per unit one for the fire pump and one for the main panel?
 

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If this was my install, I'd confirm with the AHJ that you could have a second separate single gang meter base, and use just 1 meter for the 3 pumps. I see no need for each to be on it's own meter IMHO.
 

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If there are common area loads like hall lighting or area lighting outside for a parking lot, then there is some sort of condo fee that covers this. It could be added to that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Fair point. I misread and thought these were apartments.
If there are common area loads like hall lighting or area lighting outside for a parking lot, then there is some sort of condo fee that covers this. It could be added to that.
Is this common practice for a dwelling unit? Ive seen these in the past just wired off the household panel. but have also wired off a transformer for a jockey pump to feed an industrial facility. Any one delt with this before?
 

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I see residential sprinkler systems on the same panel as the dwelling load. I've also seen assisted living with the fire pump on an entirely different service lateral and separate meter, as well as separate breaker and feeder from the generator. Good question.
 

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Never saw a fire pump for residential but can imagine a lot of questions that probably only the AHJ could answer (although I probably wouldn't like their answers). I can see reasons for doing it either way. This should be interesting.
 

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You need to run it by the fire marshal.
Yes, I’m dealing with this right now on a job. The state fire marshal supersedes the NEC in my state.
If the pump is used fore fire protection it will most likely require a separate service and remote disconnect so it’s not inadvertently shut off during a fire.


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Check but I believe if it is an electric fire pump then you need a back up generator. NEC 695.3.B.
If this is the case, I'd go with the 1 meter idea and then just install 1 generator for the fire pumps...

Or I suppose 3 generators, one for each dwelling unit, provided the generator could also be used for regular backup power. I suppose if this was done, the fire pump would have to come off the generator with its own fire-proof wiring right? Like a normal commercial building fire pump installation?
 

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It seems a bit ridiculous to require pumps at all. Fire hydrants are supplied by the same source as domestic water. I imagine they have pumps that boost the pressure, so why not T off of them for residential fire sprinklers. Most homes have pressure regulators on the domestic water supply if that was bypassed for the sprinklers would that be enough pressure? Generators and jockey pumps for residential seems to be a bit overboard.
 

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Whether you need a firepump or not is dependent on static and residual pressure on the fireline relative to how high you have to push the water. It's not something for an EC to determine. The sprinkler contractor or life safety engineer needs to spec it.

And fire marshal has to approve it.

And electric inspector too, but that's the last piece of the puzzle.
 

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The only time Ive done a private residential sprinkler system, they weren't required. It was something the homeowner wanted. The systems were fed off wells, and the holding tanks sat right next to the salt tanks. It only had a small pump to keep whatever pressure. I doubt it would ever keep up with with a few heads popping. It was probably designed just to get a head start before the firemen show up. It was monitored by the residential fire/security alarm for flow and power. We didn't follow any of the codes for legally required sprinkler system, although we did put breaker lock on it, and painted it red. I don't think we did that to the well pumps, just the booster in the basement. If I remember, it was just a one horse 120v motor on maybe a single 30a breaker? It wasn't sized for locked rotor, and was wired with Romex out of a sub panel.

Since yours is being required, there's probably more codes to follow. Definitely check with the town. Last summer we did a five story 75 unit residential wood framed VA building. It was fully sprinkled between floors as well as below the sheetrock. No fire pump. I guess they had enough pressure? The only motor was for the dry system in the space above the top floor, below the roof.
 
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