A number of construction inspectors in various locales are requiring plenum rated water submeters to be installed in multihousing projects. To be more specific, the requirement is applied in cases where the submeters are to be installed in plenum spaces – HVAC closets within the individual apartments.

The smaller problem – there is no such thing as a plenum-rated submeter.

Why isn’t there such a thing? I’m not an engineer but here’s is how it was explained to me:

For a material to be what is typically referred to as plenum-rated,” a material is tested according to a protocol called ASTM Standard E 84-05. The “fire-test-response standard for the comparative surface burning behavior of building materials is applicable to exposed surfaces such as walls and ceilings.”

To be precise, it’s not that there is no such thing as a plenum-rated submeter; it’s that there is no recognized test by which a submeter could be tested. Existing tests are intended for building materials with large exposed surfaces such as walls and ceilings – not for 5.5” to 7.5” long submeters.

The bigger problem– the inspector is requiring “plenum-rated” submeters and you need to either convince him that it is not applicable or you need to offer an alternative. Which solution makes the most sense depends on your situation. Fill out the blue form to the right ➡  – we’ll contact you and give you a solution.

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