ASTM E1105: Basic Information
What is the ASTM E1105?
By exact definition it is the "Standard Test Method for Field Determination of Water Penetration of Installed Exterior Windows, Doors, and Curtain Walls, by Uniform or Cyclic Static Air Pressure Difference". This test method helps to simulate a wind driven rain event under severe rainfall conditions.
Note that the test method is primarily used in conjunction with U.S. and Canadian test standards/specifications that are aimed at testing newly installed fenestration products (and the surrounding wall envelope) for quality control and assurance purposes. These test standards are approved and accepted by the three major governing bodies:
Who is qualified to conduct the ASTM E1105 test method?
To answer that question correctly one must first better understand the ASTM E1105 test method. The ASTM E1105 is only a starting point that details how the water penetration test should be set-up (as shown above), and it also provides specific performance requirements for the Spray Rack Systems that are to be used during the test.
In order for the ASTM E1105 test method to be utilized correctly the test agency in charge must follow the appropriate industry test standards. In this case, the applicable field test standards that use the ASTM E1105 test method would be the AAMA 502 and/or the AAMA 503. These test standards provide additional information that is critical in conducting the tests properly, and the ASTM E1105 test method alone does not explain or address that information; for example, there is no guidance on how to determine the appropriate field test pressures and performance criteria that must be used without consulting the test standards and specifications. It's important to note that only AAMA accredited test agencies are qualified to perform AAMA tests as written in the test standards themselves.
Why are only AAMA accredited test labs certified to conduct the tests?
In order to meet the test standards' requirements, the test agency must satisfy Section 4.4 of the AAMA 502 (Note 3) and Section 3.4 of the AAMA 503 (Note 5). By meeting these requirements the test agency is demonstrating that they are qualified to issue out test reports that are valid and accepted by the building industry; meaning there will be no objections or disputes from all sides as to how testing was conducted and whether or not all test equipment used was accurate enough to fully satisfy the test standards & methods used.
If you are in doubt of a test agent's qualifications simply ask them to provide recent copies of their AAMA test lab accreditation certificate for you so that you may verify compliance with the AAMA 204 requirements.
Section 4.4 (Excerpt from the AAMA 502 Test Specification): Testing shall be performed by an AAMA accredited independent testing agency.
NOTE 3: AAMA accredited laboratories are required to comply with AAMA 204, "Guidelines for AAMA Accreditation of Independent Laboratories Performing On-Site Testing of Fenestration Products". The Requirement of AAMA accreditation assures the specifier that the laboratory has the staff, training, experience and calibrated equipment to properly perform field testing.
What is the flow rate of the ASTM E1105 spray rack system?
What if my project's specifications do not require that an AAMA accredited test lab be used?
In these instances you may have more flexibility with what you can do due to the fact you are not specifically obligated to hire an AAMA Accredited Third Party Test Lab. In instances like these we recommend a more cost effective solution such as either renting out the calibrated test equipment or purchasing the necessary test gear so that you can perform your own field tests. We often assist builders, owners, consultants and installers get set-up to run their own quality assurance tests. For pricing on either purchasing or renting the test equipment don't hesitate to call or email our office.
However, it's always important to make sure that whatever course of action you end up taking that you get the approval of the test specifier so that there are no complications at a later date.