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Microbiologically influenced corrosion (MIC)

Blog on June 17th, 2011 Comments Off

What is MIC and how may MIC affect your sprinkler system?
MIC is corrosion aided by bacterial activity in your sprinkler system. MIC can destroy sprinkler piping at an alarming rate. In addition, the byproducts of corrosion can clog sprinkler piping and sprinklers, which may inhibit your system from operating as it was originally designed. Galvanized coated piping can delay the process of corrosion. All types of sprinkler systems may be susceptible to MIC.

What can you do?
Water analysis testing and internal pipe investigations are powerful tools in identifying problematic water conditions in fire sprinkler systems. Water testing involves physical, mineral, and microbiological culture analysis testing to identify conditions and formulate corrosion mitigation options. The testing methods we use provide clients with a detailed assessment of their particular water condition. The testing is performed as per NFPA 13 standards.

Section 23.1.5.1 of the 2007 Edition of NFPA 13 states:
Water supplies and environmental conditions shall be evaluated for the existence of microbes and conditions that contribute to microbiological induced corrosion (MIC).

Section 23.1.5.2 of the 2007 NFPA 13 states:
Water supplies and environmental conditions shall be evaluated for conditions that contribute to unusual corrosive properties.

Pinhole leaks, nodules build up on the inside of piping, pitting at the bottom of the piping or unwanted trips (on a dry or pre-action system) are signs that MIC may be present in your system. If you suspect your system may be affected by MIC or for more information regarding MIC treatment and prevention options, please contact Associated Fire Protection at 973-684-4500.

Dry and Pre-Action System Protection from Oxidative and MIC Corrosion by Doug Chartier is another interesting article regarding MIC and oxidation.

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