Firstly, hose assemblies that have a leak are a risk to personal health and safety, but there are also many environmental issues associated with contamination caused by leaks. Therefore, from a health perspective, testing industrial hoses is a crucial process to follow for health and safety reasons as well as from a financial perspective. The loss of production from unforeseen outages can be very costly, therefore ensuring your hose assemblies are tested properly will prevent unwanted costs from occurring.
There are various industrial hose testing services available and which one you choose is dependent on the type of hose assembly you use; flexible metal hose, stainless steel hose and many others.
Certain applications will require an electrical bond between the end fittings of a hose assembly to avoid a static build up within the length of the hose. In order to achieve this, a conductive material is incorporated within the hose that is bonded to the end fittings.
This type of hose testing involves filling a hose assembly with water and taking it to a pre-specified test pressure. This test pressure is generally 1.5 times the maximum working pressure which is then held for a set period of time.
Buckley Industrial has developed one of the most advanced hydrostatic testing facilities available. The test rigs are custom built with highly sensitive computer aided tracking equipment. This equipment allows the operator to apply the exact test pressure for a set period of time and monitor any pressure drop. Even the smallest leak that is not visible to the naked eye, can be detected.
A hose assembly can still pass both visual inspections and a hydrostatic test; however there can still be imperfections to the assembly’s internal structure. This could cause it to fail very shortly after being tested.
Videoscope facilities are used in this instance to inspect the internal structure of the assembly to see what damage there may be. This incorporates the following features: powerful light source, high definitions & magnified display, various lenses and laser measurement system.
Helium is extremely rare in the atmosphere and therefore makes it easier to find leaks, but it is also inert which means it is safe to test with. Helium has a smaller molecular size, which makes it very searching enabling it to penetrate tiny holes which other testing fluids may not be able to.
Mobile Test Unit
Buckley Industrial offers an on-site flexible hose assembly testing facility alongside their other comprehensive testing facilities. The first stage of the test procedure is a visual inspection. The second stage is a hydrostatic pressure test at 1.5 times the maximum working pressure. After the pressure test, the assemblies are thoroughly dried using a system of air blowers.
This testing procedure involves preparing the hose assembly for testing by making sure it is completely sealed. The assembly is connected to the test rig via a flexible hose on one end and the other end of the hose will have a valve attached to release the nitrogen slowly and safely once the test is complete.
This testing process is normally employed to test hose assemblies that are used in suction applications, to ensure they will stay rigid during service.
There are various ways the exterior of a hose can be damaged. Some of the defects can be easily spotted but some may not be as obvious. Although some defects may look harmless, others can be a disaster waiting to happen.