Below is a precise firefighting pump installation testing and commissioning method statement which is very useful as a guide for plumbing or firefighting engineers working on a construction project.
Below is list of equipment and tools:
- Mechanical Tools
- Spanner Set
- Grooving / Threading Machine
- Valve opening keys
- Test gauges
- Multi Meter
- Dial gauge
- Pressure gauge
Select a location for the pumping unit installation (pump, base plate, coupling and driver) that will:
Be clean, well ventilated, properly drained and provide accessibility for inspection and maintenance (see outline drawing for dimension) outdoor installations may require protection from other elements particularly freezing.
The suction supply system must provide the pump i.e. the suction tank location with its base or above the same elevation of the pump.
Foundation, Mounting & Support Requirements:
Concrete, (reinforced as necessary or required) is most widely used for the foundation. In sufficient mass, it provides rigid support, which minimizes deflection and vibration. It may be located on soil, structural steel or building floors, provided the combined weight of the pumping unit.
Use qualified personnel (riggers) to lift or move unit at any time. Never lift unit using hooks or slings on shafts Never place eyebolts in tapped holes except for removal of a part to perform service work.
When the unit is received with the pump and the driver mounted on the base plate, it should be placed on the foundation and the coupling halves disconnected. The coupling should not be reconnected until the alignment operations have been completed.
The base plate should be supported on rectangular metal blocks and shims or on metal wedges having a small taper.
The support pieces should be placed close to the foundation bolts on large units, small jacks made of cap screws and nuts are very convenient. In each case the supports should be directly under the part of the base plate carrying the greatest weight and spaced closely enough to give uniform support.
Adjust the metal supports or wedges until the shafts of the pump and driver are level. Check the coupling faces as well as the suction and discharge flanges of the pump for horizontal or vertical position by means of a level. Correct the positions, if necessary, by adjusting the supports or wedges under the base plate as required.
Pumps and drivers mounted on a common base plate were accurately aligned before shipment.
Realignment is necessary after the complete unit has been leveled on the foundation and again after the grout has set and foundation bolts have been tightened. The alignment must be checked after the unit is piped and rechecked periodically. To facilitate accurate field alignment, we do not dowel the pumps or drivers on the base plates before shipment.
Fire Pump Alignment
Reliable, trouble‐free, and efficient operation of a pumping unit requires correct alignment of firefighting pump and driver shafts.
Misalignment may be the cause of:
- Noisy pump operation
- Premature bearing failure
- Excessive coupling wear
Factors that may change the alignment of the pumping unit are:
- Setting of the foundation
- Springing of the base plate
- Piping strains
- Settling of the building
- Shift of pump or driver on the foundation
Correct for excessive parallel and angular misalignment by slightly shifting the leveling wedges under the base plate. Tap tightly (in or out) with a hammer. Retest alignment after each shifting of a wedge.
In some instances, for factory aligned pumping units, it may be necessary to change the shims under the pump or driver, or even relocate these factories positioned units on the base plate. Make such changes only after it is certain alignment cannot be obtained by shifting of the wedges.
If wedges are shifted or shims changed a substantial amount to obtain proper alignment, recheck the piping alignment and level of the shafts.
Suction & Discharge Piping Connections
The suction and discharge piping should be arranged for the simplest, most direct layout, to be of sufficient size and be internally free of foreign material.
The piping must never be pulled into position by the flange bolts. It must be independently fixed and arranged.
The suction piping, if not installed properly, is a potential source of faulty operation.
To achieve best pump performance:
- The suction lines, when operation must be kept absolutely free from air leaks.
- A strainer should be installed in suction line. The screen must be checked and cleaned periodically. The opening in the screen must be smaller than the sphere size allotted for the impeller.
- Piping should be cleaned mechanically and chemically, and flushed prior to installing the pump. A large number of pump packing, mechanical seal and seizure troubles are due to improperly cleaned systems.
- The Pump should also be inspected internally for foreign matter that may have entered the pump.
- The suction pipe shall be sized such that pump capacity and minimum distance to be maintained from suction pump flange.
Pre Commissioning Checks For Electrical Fire Pump
Check and inspect the installation of fire pump set is complete and as per drawings
Ensure adequate clearance is available for service and maintenance of pumps and motors.
Check all nuts, bolts, screws fasteners etc. fixed and tightened as required.
Check alignment is OK (verification for any minor changes.).
Rotate the pump manually and ensure free and smooth rotation.
Ensure piping is pressure tested.
Check and ensure piping is flushed and clean
Verify the water levels in tanks O.K
Adjust desired cut in and cut off pressure as per requirement.
Pre Commissioning Checks for Jockey Pump
Foundation bolts through the base plate into the concrete plinth for tightness.
Mechanical seal for leaks when water has been supplied to the Jockey pumps.
Check gland packing and adjust for correct leakage rate.
Electrical motor wiring between control panel and motor that the correct phase connections have been made.
Check all motor wires and control panel wires are tight.
Control fuses in control panel are in working Condition
Check panel lights in working condition.
Ensure pressure switch is wired to control panel.
Check pump suction valve is opened and water in pump.
Auto start function by dropping the pressure on the initiation pipe work.
Check emergency start on control panel.
Pre‐Commissioning checks for fire pump room equipments
Ensure that all pressure gauges are installed.
All accessions of firewater tanks [limit switches, overflow and vents] are complete.
Ensure that power supply cables to all pump controllers are complete.
All isolation valves, check valves / drain valves are installed and are in the normal operation position.
Ensure that water is filled in the firewater tanks and are ready for operation.
Pressure relief valves are set to the required set pressure.
Ensure that flow meters are installed
Ventilation system for fire pump room is complete and are ready for operation.
Check all powers cabling and control wiring is completed and dressed neatly.
Power isolator is fixed close to the pump motor for emergency stop and power isolation.
Check all termination’s are completed and tightened as required.
Grounding connections are completed.
Fire Pump Testing & Commissioning Acceptance Tests
Controller Acceptance Test
Fire pump controller shall be tested in accordance with the manufacturer recommended test procedure. Ensure that the automatic operation sequence of the controller shall start the pump from all provided starting features this shall include the pressure switches.
The steps involved in field acceptance test of controller shall be as follows:
Ensure suction gate valves are opened.
Check and ensure that all air content in the pump has been allowed to escape through the air release valve.
Compress packing evenly with gland ( Gland nut should be finger tight)
Pressure switch ( senses discharge pressure) shall be set lower to prevent pump from starting
Place the main disconnect switch in on position
Place circuit breaker in on position and check if power on light is illuminated. Open the system valve gently and slowly.
Start the pump
Slowly open the flow meter isolation valve
Check the general operation of fire pumps unit, watch for vibration leaks unusual noise and general operation.
Regulate the discharge valve to achieve various flow readings
Important test points are at 150 % rated capacity and shut off, Intermediate points shall be taken to help to develop pump performance curve.
Record the following data of each test point
- Pumps suction pressure
- Pump discharge pressure
- Pump RPM
On completion of test, the calculated reading are used to plot a graph of the test points and are compared with the manufacturers pump characteristic curves a study of these curves will show the performance picture of the pump as it was tested.
Field acceptance Test for Electrical Driven pump set
Authorized representative shall be present for the field acceptance test.
Authorities having jurisdiction shall be notified as to the time and place of the field acceptance test.
All the electrical wiring to the controllers intended shall be completed and checked by the electrical contractor prior to the initial startup and acceptance test.
A Copy 0f the manufacturers certified pump test characteristic curves shall be available for comparison of the results of the field acceptance test.
The fire pumps as installed shall the performance as indicated on the manufacturers certified shop test characteristic curves within the accuracy limits of the test equipment.
The fire pumps shall equal perform at minimum rated and peak loads without objectionable over heating of any components.
Starting the Pump
Isolate Jockey pump controllers
Open the drain valve to start pump
After 2‐3 minutes close the drain valve and shut down the electric motor by (off) push button
Press manual start button on the controller
Ensure that electric motor starts