Cooling towers - the name itself gives the air of the opposition to fire. Their existence is for the soul purpose of removing heat. However, cooling towers contain very real fire hazards: Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) fill; Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) walls (FRP is often mistaken as an acronym for fire resistant plastic), fan stacks, fan decks, fan blades, louvers, partitions, and catch basins; Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) and Polypropylene nozzles; and wood. Cooling towers are susceptible to fire when they are online or off. When a cooling tower is online, there are several dry areas within the building with fire hazards available to fuel a blaze. When cooling towers are offline, they are at greater risk for fire with a larger volume of dry space to invade. Don't wait until a fire erupts in a cooling tower to find out the fire sprinkler pipes have failed.
Causes: Cooling Tower Pipe Deterioration
Pipe corrosion and scale formation are part of the lifecycle of pipes within a cooling tower. The humid living conditions of these pipes are the perfect catalyst for the deterioration of fire protection pipes. In fact, without pipe and general metal component up-keep, it is estimated that a cooling tower will need to be completely torn down and rebuilt approximately every twenty years. There are three main triggers of pipe break-down in a cooling tower.