A room integrity test is one of the most important aspects of any fire suppression system within protected room. If a protected enclosure has a suppression system, the agent that is discharged into the enclosure has to be able to remain there for a minimum period of 10 minutes, from the initial activation of the fire alarm or alert.
A fire suppression system can provide adequate cover and function correctly if the room is adequately sealed. A room that is insufficiently sealed may allow the suppression agent that has been discharged into the room to escape too quickly, prior to fully extinguishing the fire which may result in massive damage to your major asset.
On Site Fire Integrity Test
The performance of any protected room and fire suppression system can only be guaranteed when serviced regularly through a professional maintenance routine. APT always recommend that a room integrity test is made part of an annual service and maintenance package, to ensure that on discharge, the suppression agent achieves and maintains the correct concentration, at the appropriate height for minimum required time frame.
In many instances although the room may be quite air tight, the enclosure may still fail the integrity test as the distance from the structural height, i.e. the ceiling of the enclosure may be very close to the top of the protected height – the top of the server racks. When designing a protected enclosure it is always best to allow plenty of distance between the top of the protected height and the ceiling as this should result in more retention time, as long as your enclosure is sufficiently airtight.
It is worth noting that if your protected enclosure suffers fire damage, it may not be covered by the buildings insurance if you don’t have up to date Fire Integrity Certification, so the importance of having valid integrity test certification cannot be overstated.