Fire Tetrahedron VS Water Flow Tetrahedron

Remembering all the variables that make up an efficient firefighting attack line can be difficult. In the fire service, you’re probably aware of and have learned about the foundation of Fire. The foundational principle of fire is commonly taught by using the Fire Tetrahedron. We’re going to go over the Fire Tetrahedron below. Then we will introduce the Water Flow Tetrahedron to draw on what you already know and present an easily understood method to consider when determining your water flow needs and desires.

But first, what is a tetrahedron?

A tetrahedron is commonly described as a pyramid that is solidified and exists with four plane faces. The four elements that make up these planes must be present for the sum of the parts to exist as a whole. If you remove any one or more of these essential elements in any tetrahedron, the structure falls apart.


The fire tetrahedron is compose of fuel, heat, oxygen, and results in a chemical chain reaction. Like any other tetrahedron, when you remove just one or any number of these variables, the fire goes out is extinguished. This symbol might seem simplistic however, it is a great analogy to explain how you can theoretically put out a fire.


Using the same tetrahedron structure, you can gain insight into your water flow characteristics and raise the level of awareness and understanding to determine the ideal water flow solution for your problem or troubleshoot a water flow issue you are facing.

The water flow tetrahedron is composed of reaction force, impact, reach, and results in efficient firefighting operations. The three outer triangle planes are each a function of flow volume and pressure. Changing your water flow volume (GPM) and/or water flow pressure (PSI) will have a direct effect on all of these variables.

Your ultimate goal is to extinguish the fire. An efficient firefighting operation is mission critical to accomplishing this goal. We hope that this unique presentation of water flow variables can increase the likelihood you are able to keep your water flow system in the balance during firefighting operations and your crew comes home safe and accomplished at the end of each day. If you have any questions or would like to talk to one of our water flow experts about ways you can solve unique issues you are facing, please reach out to us below. Your passion is our business.