Tyco’s acquisition of Central Sprinkler Company makes replacing Model A Royal Flush Plates difficult, but not impossible
If you’ve landed here, odds are you have Central Sprinkler Company (CSC) Model A, 76A, AA, or A-3 Royal Flush concealed fire sprinklers and need to find replacement cover plates.
QRFS routinely receives calls from frantic buyers in need of this uncommon product for discontinued sprinklers. In this article, we’ll show you what makes the Royal Flush cover plate so unique. We’ll also explain why they’re so rare and help you explore replacement options.
If you’d like to purchase a cover plate now, QRFS carries the following covers for obsolete Royal Flush fire sprinkler heads:
Tyco acquired Central Sprinkler Company and discontinued cover plates
In the late 1990s, Central Sprinkler Company found itself in financial trouble following a legal battle over its Omega sprinklers. CSC discovered that the Omega sprinkler, which featured an O-ring seal, was compromised over time by corrosion, minerals, salts, and other contaminants that could cause it to fail during an emergency.
Following legal settlements and the recall of nearly 8.4 million Omega sprinklers, CSC was in dire need of capital. Tyco International, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of fire sprinklers and fire protection equipment, acquired Central Sprinkler Company in 1999, providing the solution the company needed at that time.
For those with Central Sprinkler Company fire sprinklers and cover plates, this acquisition made it more difficult to find replacement parts. Tyco stopped manufacturing the CSC Model A Royal Flush Concealed Sprinkler—and the corresponding Cover Plate—in 2002.
Cover plates from the RFII, Tyco’s successor to Central’s Royal Flush fire sprinkler, won’t fit the original Royal Flush sprinklers
Tyco still offers fire sprinklers that go by the name Royal Flush (or “RF,” for short). But as you can see below, the Tyco RFII—the successor model to the Model A Royal Flush—has some obvious differences. The older Tyco Model A Royal Flush (left) has a larger diameter but reduced depth:
The top of the Tyco Model A Royal Flush is about 3 5/8″ wide and the base is around 2 5/8″ wide. It’s also less than 1″ tall. On the other hand, the Tyco RFII has a slightly reduced 3 3/8″ width and the base is only 2 1/4″ inches wide.
Fire sprinkler cover plates require an exact substitute
NFPA 13: Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems requires cover plates to be part of a listed sprinkler assembly.
From the 2022 edition of NFPA 13
7.2.6 Escutcheons and Cover Plates.
220.127.116.11 Plates, escutcheons, or other devices used to cover the annular space around a sprinkler shall be metallic or shall be listed for use around a sprinkler.
18.104.22.168 Cover plates used with concealed sprinklers shall be part of the listed sprinkler assembly.
“Part of the listed sprinkler assembly” means that cover plates must be specifically approved for use with a particular sprinkler. These approvals—issued by UL, FM Global (FM), or another certification organization—certify that a fire sprinkler head will perform as intended in a specific application. Even a slight mismatch between the cover plate’s characteristics and the fire sprinkler head can diminish sprinkler system performance or disable a sprinkler head entirely.
Rare cover plates replace the CSC Model A Royal Flush cover plate exactly, but installing new concealed fire sprinklers is also an option
Two replacement options are available for the CSC Model A Royal Flush concealed cover plate: either replace all of these sprinklers AND cover plates or purchase Tyco Model A Royal Flush concealed cover plates.
The expense of replacing components within your system can quickly add up. It’s important to remember that all replacements must be performed by a licensed professional. The costs of installing new fire sprinklers include:
- Hiring a fire sprinkler contractor or fitter to install heads
- Hiring a designer to ensure that sprinklers have the required performance characteristics
- Purchasing fire sprinkler heads and plates
- Loss of productivity (during installation, parts of the building may need to be evacuated)
- Inspections by local fire officials
There are many factors to take into consideration when installing or replacing components within a fire sprinkler system such as the sprinkler and cover temperature ratings, coverage area, response time, and more. Failure to account for any of these characteristics can result in failing inspection or increased fire risk.
The other and perhaps more feasible option is to purchase a Tyco Model A Cover Plate. These are expensive replacement cover plates, whether you buy them from QRFS or anywhere else. By discontinuing these covers, Tyco has made them more difficult (and costly) to obtain. However, this cover plate meets the temperature ratings of CSC Royal Flush sprinkler heads and fits perfectly.
Fire sprinklers compatible with the Tyco Model A cover plate
|A||3/8, 7/16, 1/2||155F (68C), 162F (72C)|
|76A||3/8, 1/2, 17/32||155F (68C), 162F (72C)|
|AA||3/8, 7/16, 1/2||155F (68C), 162F (72C)|
|A-1||1/2||155F (68C), 162F (72C)|
When you purchase Tyco Model A Royal Flush cover plates from QRFS, you benefit from our competitive pricing, extensive product knowledge, and quick delivery times (generally within 2-3 business days).
If you’d like to purchase a compatible cover plate now, QRFS carries the cover plates for Royal Flush Model A, Model 76A, Model AA, and Model A-3 fire sprinkler heads in three colors: white, grey-white, and chrome.
This blog was originally posted by Jason Hugo and Cameron Sharp at blog.qrfs.com on May 20, 2016, and updated on February 5, 2023. If this article helped you find a solution, check us out at Facebook.com/QuickResponseFireSupply or on Twitter @QuickResponseFS.