How to Test a mosquito repellent?

I am going to write a series of “How to Test” posts, where I shall try to deal with how to test some objects/equipments of day-to-day usage, which don’t use any software application! I will write these posts over next few weeks. So stay tuned for some really interesting “How to Test” posts.

I selected a mosquito repellent as my first post of the series, because I could remember being asked this question (as a testing exercise) few months back by a friend.

Note: While writing some test ideas on how to test the repellent, I am assuming that the machine uses mosquito repellent liquidator to operate. And I have been supplied with a pack containing a repellent machine and few liquidator refills of various brands!

Test ideas:
1. Test if the liquidator refill fits well with the repellent machine. [Installability Testing!]
2. Test the structure of the machine. Verify it with the specified structure in the user manual.
3. Plug in the repellent machine with a power terminal and see if the indicator LED glows. Also test if the machine actually is getting power supply and the liquidator fume is dispersing in the surrounding repelling the mosquitoes. [Usability Testing!]
4. Test how the machine performs under different voltage conditions. Test it under different voltage supplies (like 110 volts, 220 volts, 440 volts and even 11 kilo volts, provided you manage to get such a power supply in your test lab!) [Performance Testing!]
5. Test the power consumption (wattage) of the machine.
6. Switch ON the machine for a very long time (may be 48-72 hours continuously) and see what happens. [Stress Testing!]
7. Attach an empty liquidator to the machine and see what happens when the machine is switched ON in such condition.
8. Test different brands of liquidator refills with the machine and see if it continues to operate without any problem. [Compatibility Testing!]
9. Test the repellent with other forms of mosquito repellents (like coils, mats etc) of different brands and see what happens. [Compatibility Testing!]
10. Test the machine with different forms of plug sockets available in the market. [Compatibility Testing!]
11. Test the minimum duration in which the repellent seems to work and repel mosquitoes. [Capability Testing!]
12. Test the minimum area (in cubic feet) in which the repellent is effective on mosquitoes. [Capability Testing!]
13. Test the machine in an open area (not inside a room, may be on roof top, open field, garden etc.) and see if the effectiveness changes. [Capability Testing!]
14. Test if the repellent is also effective on any other insects like moths, bugs, cockroaches, flies etc. [Capability Testing!]
15. Test for possible side effect of the repellent fume on human beings specially, children, pregnant women, elder persons etc.
16. Test the possible side effects, if the repellent is consumed orally or the liquid is somehow spilled over someone.
17. Test the repellent in a closed room (An AC room, toilet, store room etc.) and see if the fume causes suffocation to the inmates.
18. Drop the repellent machine along with the liquidator from a reasonable height (say from the height of 5-6 feet, because that is the average height of plug points at homes/offices) and test if the machine is able to avoid any damage. [Stress Testing!]
19. Test the machine under different room temperatures (say in a range of 5-45 degree Celsius). [Load Testing!]
20. See if the liquid evaporates after the seal is removed. [Thanks to Santhosh for this test idea]

I am sure there can be lot more test ideas like these. But I would like to hear them from my readers. Take this as a Testing Challenge and come back with your test ideas (of course by leaving a comment).
Update: Here my mission is to apply tester's thinking to test some objects/equipments which are not necessarily run by software. These might give us a chance to think out of the box and develop our lateral thinking abilities. I have taken these as "Testing Exercises" for myself and going to share my test ideas with my readers, so that they could also join the fun! I could have taken some software examples, but I have purposefully tried to avoid them. After all, we are accustomed to use our tester's mind to test softwares. So for a change we can try testing some non-software products. I feel, sometimes it is more challenging to test a non-software product than a software product. By the way, it doesn't hurt as long as it helps us to develop/sharpen our testing skills. [Thanks "Pradeep" for asking me for a testing mission]

Happy Testing…
Share on Google Plus

About Unknown

Debasis has over a decade worth of exclusive experience in the field of Software Quality Assurance, Software Development and Testing. He writes here to share some of his interesting experiences with fellow testers.

9 Comments:

  1. These are good test ideas Debasis but I am wondering for what mission would these test ideas fit in.

    I encourage you to continue "how to test" series and it is indeed a good idea. It would help your readers if you state the mission ( so that they understand that they need to question the mission if they don't have it ) and list the test ideas ( and maybe also let your readers know how your test ideas help towards fulfilling the mission)

    It would be cool, if you take software examples. Although your friend gave an exercise of a mosquito repellent, I think his intention of asking that was to check your flow of ideas and it appears to him that you are gaining practice.

    ReplyDelete
  2. @ Pradeep Soundararajan,

    Thanks Pradeep for your valuable feedbacks/inputs! I understand that I should have mentioned the mission while writing the test ideas. But I missed to mention it as I thought they were well understood! Anyway, here my mission is to apply tester's thinking to test some objects/equipments which are not necessarily run by software. These might give us a chance to think out of the box and develop our lateral thinking abilities. I have taken these as "Testing Exercises" for myself and going to share my test ideas with my readers, so that they could also join the fun! I hope this makes a good enough mission to go for more such "How to Test" posts in future. What do you think? :)

    As far as taking software examples is concerned I have purposefully tried to avoid them. After all, we are accustomed to use our tester's mind to test softwares. So for a change we can try testing some non-software products. I feel it doesn't hurt as long as it helps us to develop/sharpen out testing skills.

    Although your friend gave an exercise of a mosquito repellent, I think his intention of asking that was to check your flow of ideas and it appears to him that you are gaining practice.

    I am glad to hear this. I feel the purpose of writing this post has been full filled to a large extent! :)

    Regards,
    Debasis.
    Software Testing Zone

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi guys,
    Accidentally I got a chance to visit your blog. You people are doing (also pradeep) good job.
    Here I want to point out few mistakes in this blog.
    ""Switch ON the machine for a very long time (may be 48-72 hours continuously) and see what happens. [Stress Testing!]""
    This is not stress testing. This is endurance testing.
    ""18. Drop the repellent machine along with the liquidator from a reasonable height (say from the height of 5-6 feet, because that is the average height of plug points at homes/offices) and test if the machine is able to avoid any damage. [Stress Testing!]""
    But the product is not meant for dropping from certain height. You may call it as monkey testing or exploratory testing (we can include anything in this :))

    ""19. Test the machine under different room temperatures (say in a range of 5-45 degree Celsius). [Load Testing!]""

    I do not think that this is a load testing. Here you are not dealing with the load applied to the product. Just you are changing the environment. Someone can tell that what testing is this. May be compatibility again???

    ReplyDelete
  4. @ Chandru,

    Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving behind your views. As far as type of testing is concerned, even I am not sure (and not much interested either!) about the types here. :) May be that is the reason why I have chosen to put an exclamatory mark (!) next to the type of testing.

    Anyway, I respect your views and once again thanks for suggesting possible better types of testing that could be assigned to the particular test ideas.

    Regards,
    -Debasis.

    ReplyDelete
  5. How about to splash the machine with some repelent liquid and see how it works.

    ReplyDelete
  6. How about plugging in a upside position and checking the effectiveness!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. We can also check for following things:
    1.Test if the repellent dries or evaporates of in case left unused after opening the repellent.Also in case when the bottle is not opened and left for long time.
    2. Check the above part when the expiry date or best before use date has been breached
    3. Check if repellent is usable or not after the expiry date (effectiveness of the repellent)
    4. Check that the repellent works for the time frame mentioned or it finishes of before time.

    Thanks
    Priyanka Goel

    ReplyDelete
  8. Put the machine upside down and check if does not leak... (what type is it not sure)
    -Smita

    ReplyDelete
  9. -Check if proper warning message is displayed on the refill as it's poisonous and need to be kept away from children's reach.
    -What happens if refill contains kerosine/hair oil ? Remove the refill and put proper refill see if machine still works as expected.

    ReplyDelete

NOTE: Comments posted on Software Testing Tricks are moderated and will be approved only if they are on-topic. Please avoid comments with spammy URLs. Having trouble leaving comments? Contact Me!