News How do you turn a fire hydrant into a sprinkler in NYC?: NYCurious You need a city-approved spray cap. It's illegal to open a fire hydrant in NYC without a spray cap or a permit. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Spencer Platt By Nicole Brown firstname.lastname@example.org @ncb417 Updated June 6, 2018 3:10 PM Print Share fbShare Tweet gShare Email When the New York City summer gets too hot to handle, a seemingly perfect way to cool down is to open up the fire hydrant on your block. But is that actually allowed? Scroll down to find out the legal way to turn the hydrant into a sprinkler. Is it legal to open a fire hydrant? Opening up a fire hydrant without a business permit or a city-approved spray cap is illegal. The penalty for illegally opening up a hydrant is up to 30 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000, the city’s Department of Environmental Protection said. Why is it illegal? Hydrants can spew out up to 1,000 gallons of water per minute, according to the DEP. Wasting that much water reduces the water pressure at other hydrants, making it harder for firefighters to do their job. How do you get a spray cap? If you’re at least 18 years old, you can go to your local firehouse, show an ID and fill out a form for a spray cap. The firehouse will then install the cap and you’ll be able to open the hydrant for recreational use. Spray caps reduce the amount of water coming out of the hydrant to 25 gallons per minute, the DEP said. Where can illegally opened fire hydrants get reported? Illegally opened hydrants are supposed to be reported to the city through 311. By Nicole Brown email@example.com @ncb417 Nicole Brown is the Internet News Manager at amNY.com, covering local news since 2016. She has written for MSNBC.com and was editor-in-chief of NYU’s Washington Square News. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter More on this topic NYCurious: Answers to your burning questions about the cityYou have questions; we have answers. Comments Comments section is temporarily on hold. Here’s why.