What is a Storz Connection?
A storz connection is a type of hose coupling used to connect large diameter hose to a fire sprinkler or standpipe system. Invented by Carl August Guido Storz in 1882, this connection quickly dominated the European fire protection market but took nearly 100 years to find its place in the US market. Today it is the standard for most large diameter hose applications.
Storz connections solve a very common problem faced by firefighters. The thread types necessary to connect their hose to the sprinkler system or fire hydrant vary by municipality. Because a Storz is both universal and common, firefighters do not have to question if the hose they’re carrying will connect to a building outside of their primary territory.
Straight Storz Connection with Cap
How does a Storz Connection work?
When opposing Storz couplings are pressed together, special hooks on each coupling insert into the slots in the flange of the other. They are then rotated in opposite directions until tight (usually a quarter turn) and the latches engage. Inside a Storz connection coupling is a gasket and when the couplings are turned tight the gasket forms a water-proof seal. To uncouple, release the latches and turn the couplings in opposite directions from each other. When the hooks and slots are aligned the couplings will separate.
Where are Storz Connections found?
Storz connections are usually found in one of two places. Most fire engines carry large diameter hose with Storz connections. These are used to connect to a fire hydrant or directly into a fire department connection, which feeds water INTO a building to pressurize the fire sprinkler system or provide water to floors on upper levels.
For the fire department to connect their hose to a Storz connection there must an existing coupling accessible on the outside of a building or on a fire hydrant. There are three primary types of Storz connections – straight, 30 degree, and freestanding.
By far the most common is a 5 inch by 4 inch 30 degree Storz connection. These can be found on the outside wall of buildings usually marked with an escutcheon that reads “Auto Sprk” like the one pictured below. This Storz connects through the exterior wall to the fire sprinkler piping system inside the building.
Another common Storz connection is a free standing. This type of Storz connection is connected to a standpipe or fire sprinkler system through water lines that run below ground.
30 Degree Storz Connection with Cap -
Freestanding Storz Connection
Storz couplings are used for quick connections when firefighters are in the process of extinguishing a fire. Therefore, it is crucial that a Storz connection also has a Storz cap to block dirt, dust, and debris from entering the system or blocking the inlet.
QRFS offers all three types in various sizes ranging from four inch through six inch. Take a look at our complete Storz Connection selection here: http://qrfs.com/storz-connections
This is the second installment in our series describing the various elements of a fire sprinkler system. To read more, click here.