Key Project Terms: Standpipe (Building Systems Installation & Modifications)

The following is a list of useful terms to use when researching additional standpipe information on each of the topics discussed:

Automatic Standpipe System

A standpipe system that is attached to a water supply capable of supplying the system demand at all times and that requires no action other than opening a hose valve by FDNY personnel to provide water at hose connections.

Fire Department Connections

A connection through which the fire department can pump
supplemental water into the standpipe system, sprinkler, or other system furnishing additional water to supplement the existing water supplies. NFPA 14, BC 901.4 and BC 912.

Fire Hose Valve

The valve(s) located on each floor to which an individual fire hose can be connected.

Fire Pump

The (automatic) fire pump is used when the water supply can’t provide enough pressure to meet the hydraulic design requirements of the system. The pump uses water from the water supply to increase water flow and pressure.  There are multiple categories of fire pumps based on the application – as described below.

  • Jockey pump.  A small pump connected to the standpipe system used in conjunction with a fire pump to maintain system pressure.
  • Special Service Pump.  A pump is used when the water supply cannot provide enough pressure to meet the hydraulic design.

Hydrant Flow Test Letter

A test letter from DEP addressing the pressure and flow of the nearest Hydrant at a peak water usage time.

Hydrostatic Test

Hydro-testing of piping, is performed to expose defective materials that have missed prior detection, ensure that any remaining defects are insignificant enough to allow operation at design pressures, expose possible leaks and serve as a final validation of the integrity of the constructed system.

Standpipe Installation and Modification

Installation and/or modifications to piping installed for Standpipe system in a building or structure that serves to transfer water from a water supply to hose connections at one or more locations in a building or structure for fire-fighting purposes. The system is usually activated by FDNY personnel to discharge water over the fire area, or other buildings.

Subsystems and Components

  • Pumps & Storage Tanks – Required to boost pressure and maintain a reasonable water supply
  • Standpipe System During Construction – In the course of construction of new building, alteration and demolition operations of a building, permanent or temporary standpipe system shall be provided in accordance with BC 3303.8
  • Water Distribution Piping & Valves – Piping branches, mains, risers, valves, piping support and hangers

Types of Standpipe Systems

In general, buildings are grouped under 3 standpipe classes as defined by BC 902 and NFPA 14: Factors in categorizing the fire hazard level of a building include: the materials used in construction; egress and the number of individual floors, use and occupancy load.


Tanks that may supply water to domestic and/or fire suppression systems, located on the roof or inside the building.

  • Gravity tank.  Tanks providing water supply by using gravity; BC Chapter 9, NFPA 14, NFPA 22, PC 606.
  • Pressure tank.  Tanks providing a pressurized water supply; BC Chapter 9, NFPA 14, NFPA 22, PC 606.
  • Suction tank.  Tanks providing a water supply to a fire pump; BC Chapter 9, NFPA 14, NFPA 22, PC 606.

Water Service Piping

Connection to water main in the street – Dedicated Fire Service or Combined (Domestic and Fire).

Key Points & Project Terms Categories

  1. Alterations

  2. Building Systems Installation & Modifications

  3. Construction Equipment

  4. Demolition COMING SOON!

  5. New Buildings COMING SOON!

  6. Renovations

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