Elements plastic pipes testing services help determine strength and ageing properties of piping materials and systems, serving plastic pipe materials manufacturers, pipe extruders, certification bodies and utility companies worldwide, helping water and gas supplies running smoothly.

We provide independent, reliable and reproducible test data for product classification and life time evaluation. Our capabilities include hydrostatic pressure testing, chlorine resistance testing, high flow circulation loop testing and crack propagation. Our plastic pipes testing facility in Sweden is one of very few independent laboratories globally in this field with a capacity of 5,000 test stations.

Standardized, accredited and fully independent testing

We provide performance and type testing according to standardized procedures for certification and approval purposes. Our testing services are ISO/IEC 17025 accredited to international ISO, ASTM, DIN, CEN, GB and AS/NZS standards.

From rental agreements to quick setup for small projects

As your Testing Partner, we offer rental agreements for long-term projects or serve as an extension of internal test capacity with quick test setup and online 24/7 project monitoring. 

Advisory services, engineering and R&D

Our experts provide advisory services in plastic pipes testing, with deep technical expertise in standardization, approvals, test program optimization and interpretation of test results based on solid experience. We also offer applied testing focusing on new applications and assessment of new and improved properties.

For more information about our plastic pipe and pipe fittings testing, or to request a quote, contact us today.


Hydrostatic Pressure Testing

We offer extensive capacity for determination of long-term hydrostatic strength for plastic pipes, from initial testing to regression analysis for determination of hydrostatic strength and classification of Minimum Required Strength (MRS) to ISO 9080 and Hydrostatic Design Basis (HDB) services to ASTM D2837 and ASTM D2992.

Testing to ISO 9080 (MRS) and ASTM D2837 (HDB)

A complete evaluation includes hydrostatic pressure testing for generation of test data followed by regression analysis for determination of the long term hydrostatic strength, and finally classification of HDB (Hydrostatic Design Basis) or MRS (Minimum Required Strength).

  • MRS classification to ISO 9080 is based on the long-term hydrostatic strength at 20°C and 50 years.
  • HDB classification to ASTM D2837 / PPI TR-3 is based on the long-term hydrostatic strength at 73°F (23°C) and 100,000 hours.
Standard test conditions

For cold water and gas pipe materials the common test temperatures are 20°C, 60°C and 80°C. For hot water materials 20°C, 70°C, 95°C and 110°C are normally used. For ASTM standards Fahrenheit temperatures are used.

Pipe materials

Element has performed more than 300 different evaluations according to ASTM D2837 and/or ISO 9080, covering

  • PE
  • PP
  • PB
  • PEX
  • PE-RT
  • PVC
  • PSu
  • PA
Accurate pipe measurement

High precision measurements of all critical dimensions of the test samples are carried out by a robot cell. Finding the minimum wall thickness is critical to minimize scatter in pressure testing results. Our automated measuring process by computed radiography is helping to make certain we cover the whole pipe wall. The procedure is ideal for automation of the repetitive work where high precision is required.

For more information, or to request a quote, contact us today.


Plastic pipes measuring robot

Chlorine Resistance Testing

With increased demand for evaluation of oxidative resistance to chlorinated water, Element offers extensive testing capacity to demonstrate the chlorine resistance of plastic piping materials and systems. We apply ASTM F2023 (PEX, PE-RT, PP) and ASTM F2263 (PE) for testing and evaluation of the long term chlorine performance.

Evaluation of oxidative resistance to hot chlorinated water 

Chlorine resistance tests are performed to evaluate the oxidative resistance of piping materials and systems to chlorinated water. While many pipe materials have proved to be resistant to degradation, the ageing process can accelerate under more aggressive conditions with significant impact on lifetime and durability. For example, the common use of chlorine for disinfection purposes is increasing the importance of evaluating chlorine resistance of piping materials and systems.

Our accredited facility generates reliable and reproducible chlorine resistance data for an extensive range of pipe dimensions and assemblies with a capacity of 200 chlorine test stations, allowing our customers to use the test results for certification to “ANSI NSF”.

Testing to ASTM F2023 and ASTM F2263 

For chlorine resistance tests Element applies the standard methodology of ASTM F2023 (PEX, PE-RT, PP) and ASTM F2263 (PE) for testing and evaluation of the long term chlorine performance. These methods can also be used for other piping materials.

Test principle

The testing is conducted under accelerated conditions at elevated temperatures and pressures. The most common and accepted approach is to perform exposure under ”worst case” conditions.

Standard test conditions
  • Dimensions: up to OD 63 mm (2” US)
  • Capacity: >200 pipe samples
  • Temperatures: 40-120 °C
  • Chlorine concentration: 0.5 – 4.3 ppm (mg/dm3), up to 100 ppm to simulate shock chlorination
  • pH: 6.8 is set as standard (others on request)
  • Flow rate: 54 dm3/h (others are available upon request)

For more information, or to request a quote, contact us today.

Plastic Pipes Testing

High Flow Circulation Loop Testing

Element offers experimental testing to study end use conditions for water pipes. In addition to hydrostatic pressure tests, we can help you simulate how pipe life expectancy is affected by bend radius, types of fittings and pipe insulation using flowing water containing dissolved oxygen.

Experimental circulation loop testing 

Element offers high flow circulation loop testing for experimental testing by simulating and studying end use conditions for water pipes. Since hydrostatic pipe testing methods use non-circulating water, the tests results only delivers limited information regarding end use performance. In addition, this test frame is designed to allow evaluation of how pipe life is affected by bend radius, types of fittings and pipe insulation under the influence of controlled temperature, pressure and flow rates using flowing water containing dissolved oxygen


Each circulation loop has ten test stations with individually controlled flow rates. Temperatures between 20°C and 110°C can be studied. Fresh water can also be introduced at a predetermined ratio to simulate specific end use situations. Each test station has the scope to accommodate ”pipe bend” samples and the client’s own choice of fitting systems. Pipe diameters between 8 and 32 mm can be tested.

What you can study

By closely simulating end use conditions the system is ideal for product development projects with respect to studying:

  • Influence of fittings, valves and welding techniques on pipe performance
  • Pipe wall erosion and the influence of high water turbulence
  • Extraction of antioxidants
  • Comparison with hydrostatic pressure testing

Use your own test design or discuss with our experts. Element offers circulation loop testing where the client designs their own experimental work and we perform the testing and provide regular progress reports. The aim of the concept is to provide a fast and cost efficient service for simulated product development testing.

For more information, or to request a quote, contact us today.


Slow Crack Growth Test (SCG)

The determination of resistance to slow crack growth is conducted on pre-notched PE and PEX pipes. The ISO 13479 test method demonstrates one of the most critical performance criteria for PE and PEX pressure pipes at room temperatures and above. 

Testing to ISO 13479

ISO 13479 specifies a test method for determination of resistance to slow crack growth (SCG) of polyolefin pipes, applicable to pipes of wall thickness greater than 5 mm.

Principle and test procedure

Four notches are introduced on a minimum of three pipes. The notched pipes are then subjected to hydrostatic pressure in tap water, and the result is expressed in terms of time to failure. The system standards below specify the test conditions and requirements for each material.

  • ISO 4427 and EN 12201 Plastic piping systems – Polyethylene (PE) pipes and fittings for water supply
  • ISO 4437 and EN 1555 Buried polyethylene (PE) pipes for the supply of gaseous fuels
  • ISO 14531 Cross linked polyethylene (PEX) pipe systems for the conveyance of gaseous fuel

The test conditions for different PE and PEX materials are shown in table below. All testing is performed using tap water at 80°C as test media. The pressures in the table are based on SDR 11 pipes.


PE 80 / PE 100

PEX 80 / PEX 100 / PEX 125


8.0 bar / 9.2 bar

8.0 / 9.2 / 10.8 bar


> 500 h

> 5,000 h



Rapid Crack Propagation Test (RCP, S4 Test)

The determination of resistance to rapid crack propagation is also known as the Small-Scale Steady-State Test (S4 Test). The ISO 13477 test method typically demonstrates critical performance criteria for PE pressure pipes at below zero temperatures.

ISO 13477, S4-TEST

ISO 13477 specifies a test method also known as the Small-scale steady-state test (S4 test) for determination of arrest or propagation of a crack initiated in a thermoplastic pipe at a specified temperature and internal pressure. The aim is to assess the performance of thermoplastics pipes that are intended for the supply of gases or liquids. In the latter case air may also be present in the pipe. This test typically demonstrates critical performance criteria at below zero temperatures for PE pressure pipes.


A section of a thermoplastic test pipe of a specific length, maintained at a specified test temperature, containing a fluid at a specified test pressure, is subjected to an impact, near one end, in order to initiate a fast running longitudinal crack. The crack initiation process itself is designed to disturb the test pipe as little as possible.

Test procedure

The test temperature and test pressure are defined in the appropriate standards. The fluid is either identical to the one used in the intended application or an equivalent substitute. Rapid decompression ahead of the propagating crack is retarded by internal baffles and by an external cage which restricts flaring of the test pipe at the edges of the fracture.

Hence this technique achieves steady-state rapid crack propagation (RCP) in a short pipe specimen at a lower pressure than in a full-scale test. The tested pipe is examined to determine whether arrest or propagation of the crack has occurred. From a series of tests at different pressures and at constant temperature, the critical pressure or the critical hoop stress for RCP can be determined. Similarly the critical temperature for RCP can be determined by testing at different temperatures at constant pressure or hoop stress.

For more information about our plastic pipe and pipe fittings testing, or to request a quote, contact us today.

Plastic pipes RCP testing

Additional polymers testing services offered

Along with our long and extensive experience from pipe testing and approvals, Element offer extensive expertise and capabilities in polymer materials testing, covering raw materials testing, product qualification testing and failure analysis.

Polymer Characterization & Testing Services

Product Qualification Testing (PQT) Services

Non-Metallic Material Failure Analysis Services


For more information about our plastic pipe and pipe fittings testing, or to request a quote, contact us today.


Don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss your laboratory challenges and let’s tailor the best solution together.

Our team are ready to help.