What is Intumescent Fire Coatings?
Fire Barrier Paint is an intumescent paint (swells when heated, protecting the material underneath) that can be applied to most materials. Commercial grade steel is the most common material that fire barrier paint is sprayed on but it can be used to protect sheet metal, sheetrock, composite panels and interior wood.
Where To Use Intumescent Fire Coatings?
The main place to utilize Fire Barrier Paint is on exposed structural members, primarily steel, to provide a practical yet aesthetically pleasing finish. The paint needs to be applied in a level of thickness consistent to the level of protection determined by the building code.
When using Fire Barrier Paint on steel, the primary objective is to protect against heat. When utilizing the same product on wood, the primary objective is to stop the spread of the flames and smoke.
How Is Intumescent Fire Coating Made?
Fire Barrier Paint is made up of a group of chemicals suspended in a binder. This binder softens when exposed to heat which then lets the chemicals react. Once these chemicals react to the heat they react with each other to release vapors that creates a protective foam. The carbonization naturally occurs and the foam then solidifies into a insulating material.
How To Apply Intumescent Fire Coating
The best way to apply fire barrier paint is to use a sprayer as it will help you apply an even coat on all desired surfaces. Once the sprayer has been used you can go over the sprayed area and fill in any missing spots with a brush or roller. We utilize a compressed air sprayer which allows the paint to be applied evenly over the entire surface quickly, cutting down delays on the rest of the building process.
Pros & Cons of Intumescent Fire Coatings
- Easy Application: Reduced application time = reduced cost
- 3-in-1 Coatings: Coats include primer + intumescent + topcoat
- Mechanical Strength: Helps avoid impact damage.
- Flexibility: Able to adjust to structural movements.
- Poor Finish: The finish is not always perfectly smooth
- Sagging: When too many layers are used, the coatings can sag.
- Expensive: This is a premium product so it costs a little more than other options.