Fire fighting hose nozzles come in many different shapes and sizes. Each has a specific purpose for supporting optimal fireground operations and managing different types of call scenarios.
The National Fire Protection Association has created standards for nozzles that determine their performance requirements. The type of water pattern they generate varies from narrow streams to wide fog.
NFPA 1964: Standard for Spray Nozzles
The National Fire Protection Association created a set of standards that determines how nozzles should be constructed. These standards, outlined in the NFPA 1964 Standard for Spray Nozzles, cover a wide range of issues including operational design, rough handling and environmental considerations.
Nozzles must be corrosion resistant and have flushing capabilities to clear debris. They should also be able to operate across a broad temperature range. To ensure a nozzle can withstand high water pressures, they undergo hydrostatic pressure tests.
These tests involve subjecting a nozzle to water pressures far greater than the rated pressure of the nozzle. If the nozzle is not able to withstand the pressure, it will fail the test. NFPA 1964 divides fire hose nozzles into four categories: basic, constant gallonage, constant pressure and constant/select gallonage. Firefighters can choose from these different types to find the best nozzle for their needs.
A smooth bore nozzle is the oldest and most reliable type of fire hose nozzle. It has fewer moving parts than other nozzle types, which helps to reduce maintenance costs. Smooth-bore nozzles also offer better reach penetration and higher flow at lower pressures.
A hose nozzle’s sturdiness depends on the material it’s made from. Some plastic nozzles feel cheap, and their build quality may not stand up to repeated abuse. Others are more robust and built with a combination of metals to add strength.
Another factor to consider when selecting a hose nozzle is its water-spraying capability. A nozzle’s spray pattern determines how hard it hits the fire, and it can help dictate staffing needs on a hoseline. NFPA 1964 defines three types of nozzles—smooth-bore, selectable or constant gallonage, and automatic. The nozzle that’s right for your crew will depend on your water supply and the nature of the fire. The more you know about the different types of nozzles, the more likely you are to use one that’s best for your crew.
Firefighters must be aware of the different nozzles available for their truck to make sure they have the proper equipment for the types of calls they respond to. Each nozzle has threads that connect it to the hose, and not all hoses have the same size thread.
Nozzles can produce a range of spray patterns, from straight streams to dense fog, depending on the needs of a situation. Some nozzles are approved to disperse foam as well as water and can be used for direct attack or mop-up operations.
The nozzle must be able to agitate the foam solution and air together to create finished foam. Foam suppresses a fire by reducing its surface area, which deprives it of oxygen. Some nozzles are designed to provide high expansion for greater bubble surface area, while others produce smaller bubbles that can more easily reach a flame. Fire Product Search offers a wide variety of NFPA-compliant foam and water nozzles.
Automatic Spray Nozzles
In some embodiments, a spray applicator comprises a housing that holds a tank and at least one rapidly actuating automatic spray nozzle. The spray applicator further comprises a programmable spray module in electrical communication with the at least one nozzle. The nozzles may be fluidly connected to the tank via conduits that pass through the housing via an orifice.
The nozzles can disperse either water or fire-retardant foam media, depending on the type of fire. They have a relatively large waterway that makes clogging due to foreign material unlikely, and they can spray continuously, which helps reduce the number of cycles required for a fire to extinguish.
Choose from a wide variety of fire fighting hose nozzles to suit your wildland application. With a choice of nozzles that offer everything from straight stream to fog patterns and adjustable gallonage, Akron Brass has you covered!