Fires are organized into classes that describe either their primary cause or the type of material that burns. The unique danger posed by a Class C fire, by definition, involves energized electrical equipment—more specifically, “appliances and wiring in which the use of a non-conductive extinguishing agent prevents injury from electrical shock.”
Oxygen, heat, fuel—that’s all a fire needs to burn. Electrical rooms can pose a fire hazard because they have all these ingredients in abundance. Electric currents create the heat, especially those flowing through damaged cords or wires because that current can escape. Dust, paper, and any other supplies used can act as the fuel.
Power transformers are critical—and expensive—parts of the power grid. These devices convert electricity to higher (or lower) voltages so it can be used appropriately. Transformers are generally classified by the cooling systems that allow them to dissipate heat as they run. Some use oil as an insulator and coolant, while others use gas or even dry powders. But all types require transformer fire protection.
In addition to keeping the building occupants safe, most codes require electrical fire protection of some kind. When it comes to electrical cabinet fire protection, organizations like the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) have laid out guidelines for contractors and occupants alike. Learn about some essential building codes for electrical fire safety, and how an electrical room is laid out to promote a safer work environment for everyone.
There’s no way around it: transformer fires are highly dangerous, and they can be very expensive. And although they don’t occur frequently, it only takes one catastrophic event to put lives, property, and businesses at great risk. That’s why effective fire suppression systems are so important. With that in mind, how do you protect a transformer from fire? We will briefly explore the essentials of transformer fire protection—including key causes and best practices for preventing transformer fires.
Transformers are essential to safely provide power to businesses, infrastructure, and neighborhoods. A transformer is designed to reduce the voltage before it enters the structure or panel, because power lines transmit energy at a very high voltage. The possibility of electrical fires and short circuits are diminished since transformers are made to offer voltage stability and overload tolerance.