Why We Test in an Environmentally Safe Manner

  • Shorter Time
    • After initial set-up, your test(s) take minutes, not hours.
  • Cost Effective
    • Save your foam. Our methods utilize an alternative, benign liquid as a substitute for foam concentrate during the test procedure. Therefore, your annual foam test is much more economical.
  • No Haul-Away and Disposal Costs
    • Since our procedure uses a "food-grade" liquid, you can usually release the tested liquid directly to the municipal storm drain.
  • Environmentally Safe
    • With environmental issues making headlines across the country, IPS benign liquid is an excellent choice for limiting your exposure.

The most cost-effective method of keeping your fire protection systems functioning properly is to test and inspect them at specified intervals so that problems from weathering, wear-and-tear, or accidental damage can be resolved before they become emergencies. IPS will provide you with experienced technicians who will conduct a comprehensive test and inspection of your system and promptly submit an inspection audit report. If problems are found, the proper corrective action will be specified in the report. Our seasoned technicians are able to provide valuable solutions to any issue that may arise with your fire protection and alarm systems.

IPS can also provide environmentally safe ways to test foam systems. IPS's unique method uses an alternative non-foaming, environmentally benign test liquid instead of the foam concentrate normally used in the system. This substitute liquid is specifically formulated to duplicate the physical properties of the actual foam concentrate while having characteristics that enable injection rate monitoring by refractive index or conductivity measurement. Since this proportioned solution is non-foaming and contains no environmentally harmful chemicals, it is typically acceptable for direct release to storm drains leading the municipal wastewater treatment facilities.

The environmentally friendly test procedure is applicable to bladder tank and pump type balanced pressure proportioning systems and is accepted by NFPA standards. This method can save considerable time and expense while preventing possible environmental and effluent discharge issues related to foam solution discharge.


PlanitSafe

PlanitSafe involves a new concept for testing foam systems without releasing any foam concentrate to the environment.  An alternative non-foaming environmentally benign test liquid is used in place of the foam concentrate stored in the system.  This substitute liquid is specifically formulated to mimic the physical properties of the actual foam concentrate while having characteristics that enable its injection rate to be monitored by refractive index or preferably conductivity measurement.  These are the two industry accepted methods of determining proportioning system injection rate as described in NFPA Standards 11, 16, 16A and 409.  Since the proportioned solution from a PlanitSafe test is non-foaming and contains no environmentally harmful chemicals, it is usually acceptable for direct release to storm drains leading to municipal waste water treatment facilities.

PlanitSafe has proven to be an invaluable tool in troubleshooting foam system problems.  High speed data acquisition records multiple foam system input signals such as flow rate, injection rate, water and foam system pressures, and foam pump pressure.  These results are recorded at an incredible 6 to 8 input readings per second and are useful in determining foam system performance.

Click on the chart to view at a larger size.

Several measurements of proportioning system performance can be monitored and recorded by laptop computer simultaneously during a PlanitSafe test procedure. Typically measurements include conductivity of the proportioned solution, system flow rate, and pressures at various points on the system.  Conductivity and flow are measured by means of on line sensors installed downstream of the proportioner.  Pressure transducers are placed wherever system pressure readings are desired.  All system monitoring instrumentation is connected by shielded waterproof cables to a data acquisition package and laptop computer that monitors and records system performance in real time.  The laptop computer is programmed to reflect percent injection rate by comparing the measured conductivity of the test solution stream to the conductivity of various percentages of precisely pre-measured solutions made with the alternate test liquid and on site water.  Once the instrumentation is installed, on line real time data can be monitored and recorded very quickly thus reducing the total volume of solution discharged.  System performance data can usually be gathered in less than one minute from start of system operation.  Since all data is recorded electronically at high speed it is possible to generate graphs and charts showing system performance from start to finish of test.  This enables much better analysis of system performance than the current test procedures that depend on grab samples of the proportioned solution stream.

As is true with all technical procedures, qualified, well trained personnel are critical to assure that testing is done with proper care and attention to detail.  With over fifty years’ experience involving design, test, and maintenance of foam systems, Integrated Protection Services is uniquely qualified to provide the services required.