Officials earthquake-prone areas have new testing methods for equipment. 

Officials in California and other earthquake-prone areas have  new testing methods for vibration isolators and HVAC equipment, under a new ASHRAE standard.

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers has released Standard 171, “Method of Testing Seismic Restraint Devices for HVAC and R Equipment.” It provides manufacturers a way to get their products pre-qualified for areas where earthquakes are common.

ASHRAE officials said it is the first such standard for seismic-restraint testing of non-structural components that does not require shaker-table testing, which is often used in California. These tests determine the maximum force restraints can stand.

Consulting engineers can use the standard as a reference in specifications, officials added.

 “This standard is a breakthrough for ASHRAE,” said James Tauby, chairman of the committee that wrote the standard. “This new national standard moves testing from the West Coast to the entire United States.”