At which point is it recommended to perform a fire pump performance test:
1) At the furthest point of the system
2) At the fire pump
Can anyone answer this? Thanks
Normally done near the pump
Thru a test header.
Some places allow the use of a flow meter on the pump, but possibly not for the initial test.
In my company, we do both. One is a system test (the furthest hydrant), the other is a pump test.
The system performance test involves the tank, the pump, the jockey, the controls, the header and the distribution. The aim is to check if design pressure and flow can be delivered to the furthest hydrant. We also look at the pump auto start sequence, if the backup pump kicks in, the tank inlet valve and level control, pressure drop across a series of hydrants.
The pump performance test is done at the pump - basically the aim is to compare against the pump shop curve. We also look at vibration levels, fuel / energy consumption rate, signs of overheating, battery health etc.
We do both of these tests annually and the report is comprehensive and sent to insurance, maintenance and local fire authorities.
A fire pump test is intended to test the pump and driver, not the distribution system. The distribution system is a whole separate issue and a couple of different tests (hydrostatic, hydraulic gradient, etc). The flow for a fire pump test should be done via the test header that is located at the pump room. It is best to do this with the discharge valve between the pump and the system shut down and with any main relief valve shut off. That's why the pump test header is connected between the pump discharge and the discharge shutoff valve. If you don't test this way you have no way of knowing whether the flow you are measuring is the actual pump discharge rate because you don't know how much flow is going out through unknown leaks in the system and how much flow is being overboarded via the relief valve.
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