Specifying Your Fire Impregnation Treatment
1. What do I need to include in my specification?
A robust FR timber specification needs to state 2 things:
1. The fire retardant impregnation treatment
2. The fire retardant performance needed.
Loose specifications facilitate possible selection of sub standard fire treatments.
2. Are there model specifications for Lonza fire retardant treatments?
We offer a model specification for DRICON treated timbers. Click here for the downloadable document.
3. I have a specification that asks for a FR5 fire retardant treatment. What does this mean?
The UK Wood Protection Association (WPA) has a number of commodity specifications relating to fire retardant treatment. Each of these commodity specifications ONLY classifies the end use which is then used as a guide to select the appropriate fire retardant treatment.
THEY DO NOT IDENTIFY WHAT FIRE PERFORMANCE IS REQUIRED FOR THE PROJECT IN QUESTION.
Exterior timber cladding is usually assigned an FR5 commodity specification.
The list of commodity specifications is as follows:
FR1 - Non load bearing dry interior use
FR2 - Load bearing dry interior use
FR3 - Interior use with a Relative Humidity >75%
FR4 - Weather protected exterior use
FR5 - Weather exposed situation
4. What do I need to consider when specifying a quality fire retardant treatment for timber / plywood to ensure that I have a quality product that is fully compliant and durable?
There are three keys aspects to consider:
To support a Euroclass B or C specification, Classification Reports from an independent notified body according to EN 13501-1 are a key requirement.
The description of the product given in the Classification Report has to be comparable with the specification of the timber to be used in the project.
For example, if a Classification Report refers to Euroclass B, s1, d0 for 25mm thick spruce boards tested without an air-gap on plasterboard, then the product cannot be assumed to confer the same reaction-to-fire performance for:
Timbers less than 25mm
With an air gap
Other backing materials deemed to be of higher risk
Key point: Ask the fire retardant treatment company to show / send you the Euroclass Classification Report relevant to the timber species and thickness being specified or treated. Don't just assume that the correct fire testing has been done. Failure to check means you could put your company at risk!!!
All Lonza Wood Protection fire testing is done through Exova Warrington Fire Research. We hold a wide portfolio of Euroclass Classification Reports to match a wide range of species, thicknesses and end uses.
LONG TERM DURABILITY
Whilst initial compliance is a primary consideration, the ability of the fire treatment to remain stable within the timber/ plywood during its service life should also be a fundamental concern for the specifier/ end user.
DRICON - DRICON treated timber/plywood is commonly used internally and is non-hygroscopic ie. it has the ability to resist moisture to relative humidities in excess of 90% without any migration of the fire treatment within the plywood or timber.
The Wood Protection Association (WPA) independently tested DRICON treated timber after 21 years and demonstrated that fire performance had been maintained during that time.
QUALITY ACCREDITED APPLICATION
The core philosophy of Lonza Wood Protection is 'Duty of Care'.
Day in day out our aim is to deliver quality fire treated products underpinned by rigorous on going quality assurance. Lonza Wood Protection is the ONLY WPA approved and listed treater with ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 accreditations which gives specifiers, merchants and contractors alike the assurance that we consistently send out fire retardant treated boards and timbers that have full compliance to the Euroclass required.
At Lonza Wood Protection each timber species is tested individually to determine the exact fire treatment requirements and the fire retardant product retention needed for any given fire performance. This is not always the case with other fire retardant treatment suppliers.
Failure to check the correct fire certification is in place means you could put your company at risk.
5. Modern school building projects specify timber extensively. Are Lonza fire retardant treatments suitable for these types of projects?
DRICON fire treated timber has been widely used to protect interior timbers used in recent school buildings to provide a tried, tested and trusted long term fire protection in such an important environment.
6. I have a specification of B, s1 d0. What does it mean?
'B' relates to the fire performance required for Building Regulation compliance, ie. EUROCLASS B.
's' relates to the level of smoke emission recorded in the SBI ( Single Burning Item test). s1, s2 and s3 are the three levels that can be achieved, with s1 being the lowest level of smoke and s3 being the highest.
'd' relates to the level of flaming droplets recorded in an SBI test with d0 being the best level achieved and d2 being the worst.
Therefore: B, s1 d0 means treated to Euroclass B, minimum smoke emission, minimum flaming droplets.
A Euroclass Classification Report will list both the 's' and 'd' levels achieved for each material tested.