What does it take to be a New York City Fire Sprinkler System Inspector?

A New York City fire sprinkler system inspector is a civil-service job and as such it is a position that is recruited through a standardized written examination given by the NYFD. The application materials for just the test are specific and may take some effort for the potential test taker to gather and complete for submission.

Certificate of Fitness

New York City Fire Department requires a “certificate of fitness” application to be submitted before being scheduled for the instpector’s exam. The application is available for download from the City as a PDF.

Application Information

There is a $25.00 application fee payable by cash, credit, money order, or personal check. Note that debit cards are NOT accepted as a form of payment. Application Fees: $25.00 for originals and $5.00 for renewals. Checks should be made payable to the New York City Fire Department. The $25.00 fee must be paid before being allowed to take the test. Application forms are available at:

Public Certification Unit

1st Floor

9 MetroTech Center

Brooklyn, NY 11201

or at this link: http://www.nyc.gov/html/fdny/pdf/a20.pdf

Test Information

The New York City Fire Department examination for Fire Sprinkler Inspectors is known as S-12. The NYFD advises prospective test takers that, “the S-12 test will consist of 75 multiple-choice questions, administered on a ‘touch screen’ computer monitor. It is a time-limit test. A passing score of at least 70% is required to secure a Certificate of Fitness.

Call (718) 999-1988 for additional information and forms.


The following materials will be provided to you as reference material when you take the test (however, the booklet will not be provided to you during the test).

  1. Temperature Ratings Classifications and Color Coding Table
  2. Reference Guide for inspection, testing and maintenance (Section XII)
  3. Inspection Testing and Maintenance of Sprinkler Systems Activities & Records (Section XIII)
  4. Reference guide for inspection, testing and maintenance (S-95 Supervision) for fire alarm systems & other related systems

Please always check for the latest revised booklet at the FDNY website before you take the test: www1.nyc.gov/site/fdny/business/support/support.page

Qualification requirements

  1. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age.
  2. Applicants must have a reasonable understanding of the English language.
  3. Applicant must provide two forms of identification, at least one form of identification must be a government-issued photo identification, such as a state-issued drivers’ license or non-drivers license or a passport.
  4. Applicants must present a letter of recommendation from his/her employer. The letter must be on official letterhead and must state the applicant’s full name, experience, and the address where the applicant will work. If the applicants are self-employed or the principal of the company, they must submit a notarized letter attesting to their qualifications. The sample letters are available at the link: www1.nyc.gov/site/fdny/business/support/support.page

or at:

Public Certification Unit

1st floor

9 MetroTech Center

Brooklyn, NY 11201

  1. Applicants not currently employed may take the test without the recommendation letter. If the applicants pass the test, FDNY will issue a temporary letter with picture for the job seeking purpose. The Certificate-of-Fitness card will not be issued unless the applicants are employed and provide the recommendation letter from his/her employer.

Are you considering a career as a New York City Fire Department sprinkler inspector?

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