This Animated Video Neatly Sums Up How A Fire Hydrant Works

This video by Concerning Reality explains how fire hydrants in the U.S. work.
Jessica Miley

Fire hydrants can be seen on city streets all over the world. But how do these life-saving inventions actually work? Concerning Reality (CR) tackled this question, creating an easy to follow video explaining how fire hydrants in the United States function. 

CR makes a point about the hydrants explained in the video are from the U.S. as the designs can vary widely across continents. Fire hydrants the U.S. can supply water flow to firefighters up to 1500 gallons per minute. 

Hydrants were invented in 1801. They generally have a connection point that connects to a fire hose as well as a nut and bolt used to start the flow of water. The hydrant is a physical part of a city's main potable water line

When firefighters connect to a hydrant the flow of water through the main line is not affected at all. The riser or connection from the line to the hydrant provides water at pressure to firefighters to use as they need. 

Concerning Reality informs us that in the U.S. there are two main types of hydrants. Wet and dry barrel hydrants. 

The wet barrel design is used in places where freezing temperatures are uncommon. Dry barrels are then, of course, used where the temperature regularly dips below zero. 

Within cities, there may also be different types of hydrants which are generally shown by their color. In the U.S. these colors are white, yellow, red and pink or violet.