Integrity Testing

– What is Integrity Testing? –

The integrity test determines the room’s ability to contain gaseous fire suppressant, once released, for an amount of time equivalent to the emergency services’ response time. The purpose of the test is to safeguard lives and minimise structural damage.

Many different types of rooms housing electrical systems such as computer systems, servers, communications networks, control systems, electronic archives, disaster recovery and data storage, are protected by gaseous fire suppression systems. It’s a legal requirement, and best practice, to test the integrity of these rooms regularly.

What’s Involved?

A door fan unit is fitted into a doorway of the protected enclosure, using expandable door panels that fit most dimensions and measures. The fan speed and air flow replicate the size of the hole(s) in the enclosure, and by varying the fan speed the engineers can generate a variety of pressure and flow metrics. The integrity test also measures the total area of all the gaps in the enclosure through which extinguishing agent could escape. This data is then used to determine whether the enclosure complies with current NFPA and BSI regulations.

Integrity testing is an environmentally friendly procedure that usually takes one hour per enclosure, does not interfere with normal daily operations and is repeatable at short notice; in some cases, when the initial test result is a fail, remedial work and a re-test can be performed during the same site visit.

Since 2006, NFPA and BS (ISO and EN) standards have stipulated that all such enclosures must undergo integrity testing once a year, or more frequently if the enclosure changes in any way. Failure to gain a pass certificate in the specified time frame could invalidate your insurance.

– What Do the Results Mean? –

Pressure Test provides a post-test analysis report highlighting areas for improvement and indicating whether pressure relief is advisable.

If Your Enclosure Passes the Integrity Test

The engineer will issue a pass certificate to satisfy insurance requirements. Although this certificate is valid for one year, you must book a re-test if changes are subsequently made to the enclosure that could affect its integrity (e.g. equipment is upgraded or the enclosure modified). You can book your next annual test by getting in touch with Pressure Testing today.

If Your Enclosure Fails the Integrity Test

It is advisable to undertake remedial work and then book a re-test to safeguard your facility and insurance position.