Thread: Hose testing

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    Default Hose testing

    We got into a discussion today about hose testing...... What pressure do you test your hose at?

    We used to test all of our 1.5" up to 3" at 250 psi. When doing it yesterday for our newer 1.75", I was going to test it at 400 psi because it has "sevice test at 400 psi" painted on it....... Someone else thought that was the pressure that the hose must meet when it's first made, but doesn't have to meet that pressure every year.

    I did some quick research on the hose, and I think I know the answer, but I want to see what others say.

    All of our 1.75 was made within the last 8 years or so, so it is past the year 1987(?) which is the cutoff listed in NFPA 1962.......

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    We test 100' at a time, @ 250 psi for 5 minutes.
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    Originally posted by VinnieB
    We test 100' at a time, @ 250 psi for 5 minutes.
    How long does it take you to test all your hose?

    On one pumper, we carry about 1000' of 3", which we test 500' at a time. 300 PSI for 5 minutes.

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    All hose pre-1987 is tested to 250psi. After 1987, all hose should have a pressure labeled somewhere on the hose. If your hose says service test 400psi then you service test it to 400psi. Otherwise you are not actually testing it. The purpose of hose testing is to "ensure that the hose is being maintained in optimum condition. This testing of in-service hose confirms that it is still able to function under maximum pressure during fire fighting or other operations." (Essentials 4th Ed, page 437)

    Its like giving a written test and stopping the students halfway through the test. Sure, you gave them some sort of test but you didn't fully test them.
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    Originally posted by VollieFireman
    On one pumper, we carry about 1000' of 3", which we test 500' at a time. 300 PSI for 5 minutes.
    Okay, while we are on the topic of hose testing...

    NFPA 1962 says not to test more than 300' (in a single lay) at a time.

    Next quiz question: Anyone know why?
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    Originally posted by Adze39


    Okay, while we are on the topic of hose testing...

    NFPA 1962 says not to test more than 300' (in a single lay) at a time.

    Next quiz question: Anyone know why?
    Friction Loss Maybe??
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    No, friction loss only applies to moving water not to a static situation such as hose testing.

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    Originally posted by Adze39
    All hose pre-1987 is tested to 250psi. After 1987, all hose should have a pressure labeled somewhere on the hose. If your hose says service test 400psi then you service test it to 400psi. Otherwise you are not actually testing it. The purpose of hose testing is to "ensure that the hose is being maintained in optimum condition. This testing of in-service hose confirms that it is still able to function under maximum pressure during fire fighting or other operations." (Essentials 4th Ed, page 437)

    Its like giving a written test and stopping the students halfway through the test. Sure, you gave them some sort of test but you didn't fully test them.
    Forgot to mention that if you hose isn't labeled, then you test it to 250psi. If the label came/wore off over time, you would still be able to get the testing pressure if you have decent records of hose tests.
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    Anyone know why?
    You'll always get air in the line, some how or some way. If the air cannot escape, it will just compress and falsify your readings.

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    Originally posted by VollieFireman


    How long does it take you to test all your hose?

    On one pumper, we carry about 1000' of 3", which we test 500' at a time. 300 PSI for 5 minutes.

    It takes about a month to do all the hose.
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    One needs to be careful about reading the pressure stamped into the hose whether that is test pressure or ultimate(burst)pressure.Most hose mfgs will gladly supply you with the correct test procedure and some list it on their websites.All of our hose (under 4") is tested at 250 for 5 and 300 for three.Weeds out the marginal stuff pretty quick.T.C.

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    If the air cannot escape, it will just compress and falsify your readings.
    Which would lead to why you have a nozzle or gated valve on the end of the line, to allow that air to escape.
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    NFPA 1962 says not to test more than 300' (in a single lay) at a time.

    Next quiz question: Anyone know why?
    The hose is supposed to be laid out in as straight a line as possible for testing. When you pressurize it, it stretches. I believe I read somewhere that the 300' figure is because over 300', it will bend and twist too much, rather than stretch out somewhat straight as it grows.
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    NFPA 1962 says not to test more than 300' (in a single lay) at a time.
    I'm probably wrongm but maybe because it would make it harder to detect where the problem lay? ie, with 1000 feet being tested at once, a problem can be spread over the 10 lengths masking it. with the shorter lay, you will see where the problem is much easier, and identify which lenght has the problem.

    probably not right but i figured i would give it a shot.
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    There was a thread on the 300 ft. thing a while back. I don't have time to repost what I did there at the moment, but it has to do with the stretch of the hose and potential for injury if there is a burst section.

    Flow limiting devices are required for safety as well.
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    I'll take a guess here

    Probably a safety issue. Less hose means less energy stored in the water under pressure, and less possibility for damage if hose fails.

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    That would be my guess also, 300' max to control the amount of stored energy if a rupture should occur. Of course it is a general rule but the amount of stored energy in a 300' lay of 1" is no where near the amount of energy stored in a 300' lay of 6"!!!! Does everyone use a flow limiting device? I know that not everyone around me does, of course there are plenty of depts around that don't test hose at all!

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    Adze, that's what I thought too. The 400 psi is what you tested it at every year. According to the website for the hose manufacturer, our hose has service test of 400 psi and the original manufacturer test was 800 psi..........


    As for the 300', I was thinking it's due to the stretch issue. We use a hose tester for all of our testing, except for our 5".........

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    Originally posted by Bones42
    Which would lead to why you have a nozzle or gated valve on the end of the line, to allow that air to escape.
    Which way does air go? It rises.

    What's higher in your setup? The nozzle or the discharge that is filling the line? More than likely it's the discharge. We use a hose tester that sits pretty low to the ground but it is still higher and those who use engines are definately higher.

    So yes, you want to use what you said to get the air out but you most likely won't get all the air out.
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    Originally posted by Adze39


    Which way does air go? It rises.

    What's higher in your setup? The nozzle or the discharge that is filling the line? More than likely it's the discharge. We use a hose tester that sits pretty low to the ground but it is still higher and those who use engines are definately higher.

    So yes, you want to use what you said to get the air out but you most likely won't get all the air out.
    That's why in NFPA 1962 they recommend when you go to bleed out the air, you raise the nozzle above the level of the fill line intake to bleed it out completely.........

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    Less hose means less energy stored in the water under pressure,

    Water under pressure is not a store of energy.

    Water is, for all practical purposes, incompressible and doesn't store energy that way.

    The danger that happens when a water line bursts comes from the kinetic energy of flowing water -- which is why we use low-flow hose testers or put aluminum plates with a small diameter (flow restricting) hole in the discharge of the pumper being used to flow test -- if a failure happens you won't have much for kinetic energy since the flow is restricted.

    Air is a great store of potential energy when it's pressurized.

    So we hydrotest our air bottles -- if they fail while filled with water to test pressure, not much happens. If they fail while full of air...big boom.

    As for the 300' restriction itself, I can't remember although I want to say that most of the committee must've figured 250' was too short and 350' was too long

    We test our small lines within the 300' limits. Our LDH we don't -- too damn much of it to be practical so we test it as part of a long-lay drill. We have around 6500' 5" and another 2000' of 4".
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    Best I remember, 300' is max length that air can be purged from the line. remember, if you compress air, pressure in line goes way up. (think of why you have relief valves on intakes) you should flow water until the line stops spitting air out.
    once you get the air out, take it to the pressure stenciled on the hose, and gate the valves way down. you only need a minute crack in the valve to maintain static pressure. if the line fails, there will not be enough water flowing to whip the line around. remember, a brother lost his life a couple of years ago when a line burst while testing hose and hit him in the head.
    be safe

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    When I was doing some searching on the internet before I posted this thread, I found THIS WEBSITE. I wonder how much these guys are making and/or how many people actually PAY somebody else to test their hose........ If you go to the "technical" section, they go through the process they use and seem pretty proud of how they can repack the hose to look pretty......... Too bad it will be ruined after the first fire.....

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    Originally posted by firenresq77
    When I was doing some searching on the internet before I posted this thread, I found THIS WEBSITE. I wonder how much these guys are making and/or how many people actually PAY somebody else to test their hose........ If you go to the "technical" section, they go through the process they use and seem pretty proud of how they can repack the hose to look pretty......... Too bad it will be ruined after the first fire.....
    The "parade pack" method, huh? Too bad we use the "useful" method...
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    Please pardon what will probably be a stupid question. (But an instructor once told me, "The only stupid questions is one not asked"...so here it goes.)

    I understand the purpose of testing attack line at 300 (or 400) psi, with each length at 300' max. (Our attack lines 1.75 and 1.5 are usually 200' or less.) Each lay is tested. In addition we test our 2.5 because it can be used as an attack line (same conditions).

    However, our supply line is either 5" or 3". The hydrants in our area are probably average the best has about 200 psi, the worst about 50 psi (if that much).

    Does the supply line need to be tested under the same conditions as attack line? If so; why? If not; why not?

    I have a feeling this was covered either in another thread, or in NFPA 1962 (which I don't have but plan to get), but I figure I can get a more easily understandable answer from those more experienced than me.

    Thank you for listening and understanding.

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