Fire Rated Glass: A Must Have Feature for Modern Homes and Buildings
What is Fire Rated Glass?
There is a common misconception that all safety glass in both domestic and commercial buildings is fire rated, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.
In order for glass to be fire rated, or fire resistant, as it’s also known, it needs to carry a Fire Protection Rating so that it can comply with strict building regulation requirements.
This applies to all glass, whether in glazed fire doors, glass panels, or in walls and partitions.
How Do Fire Rated Doors with Glass Work?
Fire rated doors with glass are instrumental in keeping a building fire protective for as long as possible by stalling the spread of flames, heat transfer and smoke, and containing it to one area.
This can help to reduce long-term damage to a building in the event of a fire, and keep any occupants safer for longer while evacuation procedures take place.
How Does Fire Rated Glass Help?
Glass will often shatter in the event of a temperature rise, so fire rated glass is used to combat the hazard of exploding or broken glass. This is particularly useful for larger panes of glass, like a fire rated glass partition, which will be less inclined to shatter than toughened glass on its own.
Fire rated glass is composed of several layers of glass, with an intumescent interlayer that expands upon breakage to repel heat transfer, smoke and and fire.
Occasionally, wire can be fitted into the glass to provide additional stability to the glass and make it impact resistant.
This way, if the glass is broken by force, it will help to keep its shape and prevent large hazardous shards forming.
Do I Need Fire Rated Glass Doors?
Fire rated doors can help to slow down the spread of fire in both domestic and commercial settings, so can be a useful element to add to your home.
In commercial settings, fire doors with glass should legally contain fire rated glazing. The same applies for communal dwellings such as flats and house shares.
Even in domestic settings, there are building regulations in place to ensure fire safety in the home. For example, houses with integrated garages should have a fire door between the main home and garage, as well as access to converted attic spaces.
What Are Other Advantages of Fire Rated Glass?
By using fire rated glass, not only are you ensuring greater safety to you, your loved ones or employees, but you are also gaining a number of notable advantages without a limit on fire safety.
Fire doors with fire protective glazing can also be used as excellent soundproofing tools, especially in multiple occupancy houses.
These doors often have a solid core as opposed to the hollow core of regular doors, making them denser.
Fire rated doors are also useful in an office environment to offer privacy to the occupants of meeting rooms, and to cordon busy areas away from work areas.
They are also useful for providing a barrier to traffic noise, particularly if your office is situated on a busy street.
In order to comply with fire ratings, fire doors are often made with both integrity and insulation in mind. The insulation is very good at preventing radiant heat transfer.
Fire doors are also fitted with intumescent strips around the edge, which swell in the event of a fire and seal the room to prevent a fire escalating and a temperature rise.
These intumescent strips are also fantastic for helping to narrow the gap around a door, preventing radiant heat transfer between rooms.
In older houses, this is particularly effective at protection against heat loss and reducing energy consumption.
Final Thoughts on Fire Rated Glazing
Although fire rated glazing is compulsory in many settings to ensure safety from smoke, flames and fire damage, it can typically be beneficial for other reasons.
Using fire resistant glass in doors can provide insulation, soundproofing and protection from broken shards where used correctly.
Do You Need Advice on Fire Resistive Glass?
Speak to the experts at Halifax Glass for advice on finding the best tested fire protective solution for your next project.