What exactly is fire stopping?As the name suggests, fire stopping is a passive fire protection system that is made up of several different components that are used to seal openings and prevent the spread of fire around a building. It’s done by creating fire-resistant compartments that can contain fires so that they do not spread to surrounding buildings or compartments that could eventually overtake and engulf the entire building. The system should ensure that openings and gaps are fire stopped so that the fires cannot spread vertically or laterally across a building. In short, it’s a system that is made to prevent fires from spreading across a building and it uses various different tools that are built into the structure of your building.
Products used for fire stoppingThere’s a large selection of products which are designed specifically for fire stopping.
- Fire covers - These typically provide around an hour of fire resistance and are used for ceilings. When it’s on fire, it expands internally to create a fire resistant material that prevents the vertical spread of fire.
- Fire sleeves - These are used to fill or seal an aperture that is created by a pipe or cable. These are especially important in office buildings. During a fire, they expand to fill the space around the pipes it is covering to prevent fires from spreading. In the case of plastic pipes, the sleeve will physically crush the pipe to prevent a fire from spreading.
- Fire collars - Collars are designed to maintain fire resistance levels by surrounding pipes and other penetrations with intumescent compounds that expand when it comes in contact with heat. This creates a fire-resistant seal, closing off the service component and creating an insulating barrier.
- Fire sealant and filler - Lastly, there’s fire sealant and gap filler which expands when heated at a high temperature. This prevents the spread of smoke and fire throughout a building and there are many different types of fire sealant and filler.