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The colors painted on a fire hydrant actually supposed to mean something.


We know that what’s inside the fire hydrant helps save lives and homes, but turns out that its outside is almost just as important. The National Fire Protection Association recognizes that in the case of an emergency, the properties of different fire hydra must be immediately recognizable to fire officials and the general public. 

The NFPA specifies that fire hydrants be painted visible colors like chrome yellow, bright red, white, etc. Due to functional differences in municipal and private hydrant systems, the NFPA states they must be painted different colors and suggests red for private systems and chrome yellow for municipal systems. 

Furthermore, violet has been established as the official color for indicating a non-portable system. The bonnets and caps must be color coded to indicate the hydrant’s ability to flow at 20 p.s.i. The standard color codes are as follows: 

  • Less than 500 GPM=Red 
  • 500-599=Orange 
  • 1000-1499= Green 
  • 1500+ GPM = Light Blue 

Again, the NFPA has established these standards so that the different types of fire hydrants can be identified by both fire officials, and the general public. However, the fact that most of you learned this information on OMG Facts, probably means that it isn’t as well known as it should be. Anoher thing is that it can be confusing whenever cities don't follow the standards, or even pain hydrants in different colors. 

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