Why do we need a Room Integrity Test?
Clients often ask us ‘why do we need a Room Integrity Test?’. A room Integrity test predicts how long fire suppressant agents take to descend to a given level in the room without having to discharge the actual suppression system – this is usually 10 minutes for the most popular gases). The room is then sealed, and then a series of tests is undertaken.
We undertake room integrity testing using the latest UKAS calibrated blower door systems. The blower door fan is latched into a fully adjustable cloth door panel that fills the opened door frame space. the enclosure test is undertake by running the calibrated fan at different pressures, thus generating pressure into the protected enclosure from the outside space. By monitoring the pressure differential between the external space to the protected room a series of readings is taken from 10-60Pa on pressurise and depressurise and data inputted to our integrity software; together with added information such as the protected height and the type and weight of gas, i.e. FM200, FE25 etc.
Once the information is logged into the computer the software can then work out the descending interface height hold time, or mixing concentration result. If the protected room is air tight, then a pass should be easily achievable. If the room has too many air leakage paths (and the retention time is less than 10minutes) then it will result in a test failure.
For most extinguishing system types, a retention time of ten minutes is the minimum period the suppressant agents is required to be retained for within the enclosure. NFPA 2001, Standard on Clean Agent Fire Extinguishing Systems, requires that a minimum concentration of 85% of the adjusted minimum design concentration be held at the highest level of combustibles for a minimum period of 10 minutes. This is usually long enough to prevent re-ignition for most deep-seated fires and should provide adequate time for the emergency services to attend and prevent the fire taking hold.
If you have a protected enclosure that requires a room integrity test, please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call Darren direct on 07775623464. We undertake testing throughout London and the South East.