Water Flow

10 Common Questions about SHO-FLOW Water Flow Meters

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Date November 14, 2022
Date November 14, 2022
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Are you ready to understand your water flow more thoroughly? Are you looking for ways to make testing, training, and setting your pump discharge pressure (PDP) a little easier for the crew?  

The SHO-FLOW Bluetooth water flow meter is a great solution to the age-old question of “How do I know what I am flowing?” These water meters are small, lightweight, durable, and easy to use. Here are some of the most frequent questions we get about the device and how it works. 

SHO-FLOW FAQ 

Why do I need to know my flow? 

Understanding your flow rate is important when fighting a fire. As you know, water removes heat from the fire, cooling it enough that it can no longer burn. This means you need to supply enough water to overcome the heat of the fire to effectively fight it. If you do not understand your flow, you don’t really know if you are supplying enough water to do so. 

A flow meter helps you understand how much water you are delivering at any given time and lets you verify that your existing PDP (pump discharge pressure) provides your target flow rates. You might not use a flow meter on the fire ground but using one during training and testing exercises will give you and your crew a clear idea of how much water you are moving with your pump, hose, and nozzle combination at a set PDP. This allows you to adjust and hit your department’s target flows. 

A flow meter also allows you to conduct NFPA nozzle flow testing as outlined by NFPA 1962.  

How does it make the power it needs for a Bluetooth connection? 

SHO-FLOW 1 and 2 devices have an unobstructed internal turbine that generates power as water moves through the device. At the meter’s minimum flow rating, the turbine creates enough power to supply a Bluetooth connection. This does require you to flow water before you can connect to the device. 

The Bluetooth connection can be disrupted by distance or if you stop flowing water. If you are struggling to connect, ensure you are within 40 feet of the device and that you are flowing the minimum rated flow. 

The unobstructed water driven turbine can pass debris and has very low friction loss even at higher flow rates.  For example, our 1.5” (38 mm) model only has 3 psi of loss at 150 GPM.  

The internal turbine of a SHO-FLOW Bluetooth firefighting water flow meter 

Does SHO-FLOW need calibrated? 

The SHO-FLOW is calibrated by the manufacturer and does not need to be calibrated when you receive it. If you want to verify the calibration, you can do so through a straightforward process in the SHO-FLOW app. The calibration can be completed in the field or during training.  

Is it hard to calibrate? 

Not at all! Calibration is simple to do with the app and a hand-held pitot:  

  1. Open the SHO-FLOW app on your smart device 

  2. Click the menu button in the top left-hand corner 

  3. Select “calibration” from the menu 

  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete calibration 

How accurate is the SHO-FLOW? 

To really understand your flow, you need correct readings. The SHO-FLOW is accurate within +/- 2.5% throughout the flow range.  

Where do I put the device on my waterflow setup? 

You can put the SHO-FLOW anywhere in your water flow setup using 1.5” (38 mm) or 2.5” (65 mm) couplings. You can place the unit between two lengths of firefighting hose or connect it directly to any appliance with the appropriately sized coupling.  

Our Bluetooth flow meter devices are available with a variety of connection options, including National Hose thread (NH or NST), British Instantaneous Coupling (BIC), Storz, National Pipe Straight Hose (NPSH), and British Standard Pipe (BSP). 

Can I use SHO-FLOW with portable monitors or fixed monitors? 

Yes! SHO-FLOW can be used anywhere in your water flow setup as long as you have the proper coupling size, either 1.5” (38 mm) or 2.5” (65 mm).  Depending on what model you choose, the SHO-FLOW has a flow capacity of up to 1250 GPM. 

Do I need a smart phone to use it? 

Because SHO-FLOW connects via Bluetooth, you do need an Android or Apple smart device to use the SHO-FLOW. The unit connects with the SHO-FLOW app, which is where you receive readings and access other app functions. 

Does the app cost money? 

The SHO-FLOW app is free to download and use. In fact, you can use the app without owning the water meter! The app includes common formulas and calculators for flow, pump discharge pressure (PDP), nozzle reaction, target fire flow, and friction loss that do not require a connection to the unit. You can use the app to ease manual calculations or double check your math during testing and training! 

The app is available in seven languages: English, Spanish, German, Japanese, Chinese (Mandarin), French, and Portuguese. 

Download the app on Google Play or the Apple App Store here! 

Can more than one device connect to the app at once? 

Currently only one smart device can connect with each SHO-FLOW water flow meter, but that doesn’t mean other members of your crew cannot read the meter at the same time! Through the app’s remote view feature, members of your crew can receive the same information in real time. Once the primary device connects, other crew members can open their app and select remote view to have the same flow readings displayed on their screen in real time. 

Now you know the answers to some of the most common questions we receive about the SHO-FLOW Water Flow Meter, Keep exploring SHO-FLOW here