When is a main drain test required?

A main drain test is required annually or any time the water supply control valve is closed, this includes any time a system undergoes maintenance or repair. This test is essential to ensure that the water supply valve is fully open. Sprinkler systems perform exceptionally well, however when they do fail the major cause of failure (35% of the cases reported to NFPA) the water supply valve was closed, thus the verification of an open water supply valve cannot be over emphasized. The annual test frequency is a minimum requirement, NFPA 25 permits more frequent testing if desired.

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Quick FAQ....

I have a standpipe system with two risers. The original design indicates a total flow of 750 gpm (2839 Lpm). Am I required to flow this much water for the five year flow test?

No. When conducting the five year flow test, one riser is tested at a time. Therefore, the flow should be a total of 500 gpm (1892 Lpm), 250 gpm (946 lpm) for each of the two topmost outlets.