FAQ's

Common questions we have been asked

Q: Where can I purchase FSi Firestopping products?

A:
FSi are manufacturers of our firestopping products from our manufacturing plant in Measham, Central UK. FSi have a distribution hub based in west London where we supply our products from into the UK market place. We have a dedicated team who ensure orders for delivery and contact details are available on our web site on how to place orders.
We also have distributors and agents in many countries in Europe and Worldwide. Please see our Distribution Page for details that may cover your specific area if outside the UK.

Q: Can FSi offer certification on installations or training on their products?

A:
FSi are not a certification body, though our products are independently certified. Independent installation certification schemes exist in the market place who are UKAS approved such as Warrington FIRAS scheme.
FSi are able to offer bespoke FSi awareness product training on the use of our products from theoretical training through to practical installation of FSi products. These sessions take place at our training facility based at our Measham offices. Contact FSi for details on what the training entails and availability.

Q: What information should I look for to demonstrate that a firestopping product is suitable for use?

A:
We would recommend that the products are as a minimum have the flowing for the requirement:
  • Tested to EN1366 Part 3 or 4 as appropriate
  • A Fire Classification report to EN 13501- as issued by a UKAS accredited fire test laboratory.
  • Independently 3rd Party Accredited by an approved body.
  • CE Marked to ETAG 026.
If the products are not tested to the minimum standards above you could consider products that are at the very least have the following requirements:
  • As a minimum tested to BS476 by a UKAS accredited fire test laboratory.
  • In the case of an “Assessment” issued by a UKAS accredited fire test laboratory.

Q: How do I protect services with Insulation around metal pipes passing through a penetration seal?

A:
There are many types of insulation, however, they will either be non-combustible Class A or combustible insulation. Combustible insulation will require closure material or a closure device to be installed. FSi have extensive testing with our products around combustible insulation including Phenolic Foam and Elastomeric foam insulation using our PipeBloc® El Wrap, Foil faced Glasswool and Armaflex Insulation with our PyroPro® HPE Sealant. Where our PipeBloc® EL Wraps or PyroPro® HPE Sealant are used, care should be taken that any remaining gaps are fire-stopped with a suitably tested system that is compatible with the particular penetration is being used, this may include our Stopseal® Batt System. Generally non-combustible insulation is removed at the face of the sealing system if passing through a floor or where it passes through our Silverseal® Compound. If the insulation is classed as non-combustible (Class A) then a proprietary material must be used such as our Pyrocoustic Sealant to ensure all gaps around such insulation are sealed.

Q: How large an opening can I install FSi Batts in a wall or floor?

A:
FSi are able to offer the following sizes for large openings encountered on site:
  • Maximum size in a blockwork wall without any structural supports is 2880 x 1440mm (with services) 1200 x 1200mm (no services)
  • Maximum size in plasterboard walls without structural supports 2400 x 1200mm.
Though we do not recommend the used of or Stopseal Batts for floor penetrations as we would always recommend a loadbearing solution, we are able to offer:
  • Maximum size without mechanical supports in a floor penetration 1600 x 700mm
Where sizes are beyond these parameters we will need to provide either horizontal or vertical supports mad up with 30mm x 30mm x 1.6mm steel angle. FSi are able to provide guidance on this where required.

Q: How do I protect floor openings in line with best practice and provide loadbearing capability?

A:
Some fire stopping systems used to seal penetrations in floors may be unable to support temporary loads, such as foot traffic, etc. Care must therefore be taken to establish whether or not the installed system is load bearing to standardised levels. If the cured fire stopping seal is not load bearing to acceptable standards, all subsequent access onto the fire stopping shall be prevented by a permanent guard rail (see figure) and suitable signage. Subsequent access shall only be allowed if additional walkway systems e.g. the use of grids are provided to prevent the surface of the seal being over loaded. FSi have an excellent product for floor sealing in our Silverseal® HS Compound.

Q: PU Foam should I use such products?

A:
Many PU foams claim to be ‘Fire Rated’ often citing e.g. a Class 0, Class B1 or similar performance when tested against British or European standards. These classes are ‘reaction to fire’ classifications which are concerned with the ignitibility, surface spread of flame and heat release characteristics of the material. Reaction to fire classifications cannot support the use of the material where fire resistance is required, such as in linear gap or service penetration seals.
For example, PU foams tested as linear gap seals cannot be used to seal pipe or cable penetrations unless they have been tested in that end-use application. PU foams which are to be used in linear gap or service penetration applications must have their fire performance determined by testing to the appropriate national or European fire resistance test Standards. BS EN 1366-4 in the case of linear gaps and BS EN 1366-3 for service penetration seals.

Q: Is Fire stopping around combustible pipes which are less than 40 mm in diameter a requirement?

A:
Yes, Approved Document B states:
“If a fire-separating element is to be effective, every joint or imperfection of fit, or opening to allow services to pass through the element, should be adequately protected by sealing or fire-stopping so that the fire resistance of the element is not impaired”. Thus,provide a proprietary sealing system which has been shown by test to maintain the fire resistance of the wall, floor or cavity barrier.
It is recommended to use a proprietary sealing system as the most robust solution, as many proprietary systems exist with appropriate test evidence and/or certification. FSi has developed PyroPro® HPE (High Pressure Sealant) with this is mind to complement our existing range of products.

Q: Is there Fire Rated Batt System as a “pattress” solution?

A:
Any system intended to be used as a pattress cover to the void behind must be proven by fire test or assessment for the intended field of application and for the required fire resistance period. Ad hoc patching using plasterboard will not meet all the fire resistance criteria required. FSi have conducted extensive testing with “Pattress” fit solutions using our Stopseal® Batt System to enable works to existing and refurbishment projects where walls may not be constructed to the required standards.

Q: There are plastic pipes through the floors, however, there is no or limited space for the application of wraps, collars? What should be done?

A:
FSi PipeBloc® PCP Collars have been specifically engineered to cater for such limited space and have a maximum depth of 40mm for pipe sizes up to 250mm. Where it will be impractical to achieve an adequate fire stop with FSi PipeBloc® PCP Collars or PipeBloc® EL Wrap, It will therefore be necessary to either:
  • Reposition or extend the pipe such that a FSI PipeBloc® PCP collar can be fitted to the soffit of the floor beneath.
  • Use a smaller diameter pipe so that a PipeBloc® PCP collar or PipeBloc® EL wrap can be fitted within the floor.
  • Re-drill the hole in the floor, so that a PipeBloc® EL wrap can be fitted within the floor.
  • The pipe must be boxed in by a tested fire resisting construction solution.

Q: Can one ‘mix and match’ components from different manufacturers, or different systems made by the same manufacturer, when installing fire stopping?

A:
The simple answer is NO. While it may be tempting to use e.g. manufacturer A’s mineral fibre batt with manufacturer B’s adhesive, the combination is unlikely to have been tested and therefore may not perform in fire as intended. FSi provide systems and all our products are tested in conjunction with each other where required.

Q: If you have been told to use materials from different manufacturers in a particular installation. Is there any way I can get further advice as to their compatibility?

A:
In the absence of test evidence, the default answer is again NO. FSi strongly recommend the use of our certificated products. Such products will have a scope of application which will cover their use with other compatible components within the range. FSi would be able to offer advice directly to your client with this regards to better let them understand the requirements and parameters.

Q: How does one deal with fire-stopping combustible pipes as they pass through walls and floors?

A:
Published guidance requires that pipes passing through a fire-separating element should either be provided with a proprietary sealing system. FSi have such proprietary sealing systems such as PipeBloc® PCP Collar, PipeBloc® EL Wrap and PyroPro® HPE Sealant that is designed to close these installations.
Where our closure device’s or sealant are used, care should be taken that any remaining gaps are fire-stopped with a suitably tested system that is compatible with the particular pipe collar, wrap or sealant that is being used, these may include our Stopseal® Batt System, Pyrocoustic® Sealant or Silverseal® Compound.

Q: What is acoustic testing and do FSi have Acoustic ratings on products?

A:
Acoustic testing measures the ability of a building product and/or assembly to reduce the transmission of sound. FSi give greater assurance for their products through testing with UKAS accredited test laboratories such as Chiltern Dynamic and SRL to demonstrate that their products will perform as expected in these situations, giving clients and users the confidence to use the product. Typically it applies to products that form separating walls and floors, for example between hotel rooms, hospital rooms, school class rooms and office compartments. Sound is measured in decibels, expressed as dB, acoustic test results are expressed as decibels of sound reduction i.e. by how much the tested product reduces the transmission of sound between rooms. Test reports are available for the products.

Q: What is Air Tightness / Permeability and does FSi products have this?

A:
An airtight building is one which does not lose either heated or cooled air to the outside in an uncontrolled manner. In reality no buildings are entirely airtight and it would not normally be desirable for this to be the case as detailed below. However, high performance levels are preferred to lower ones as this increase the efficient working of the building.
Air tightness of FSi products is measuring by the extent to which heated or cooled air is lost through leaks in the building. As an example our Pyrocoustic® Sealant will assist in achieving a leakage rate of 0m³/h/m² @ 100Pa and 2.8m³/h/m² @ 600Pa as tested. Air tightness sometimes can be referred to as: - Air Leakage, Air Pressure, Air Permeability.

Q: What is my liability – I only place the order?

A:
If you are involved in provision of Built-In Fire Protection of any type, at any level, then you share liability for its usefulness and its operation when it’s needed in a fire, and that liability will still be there in the event of a court case. If it is your responsibility to specify the materials and/or appoint the installation contractor, it is also your responsibility to ensure that they can prove competency for the fire protection materials used, or the works to be carried out. It’s no longer simply a duty of care or voluntary – it’s a legal obligation.
If you knowingly ignore advice that leads to a failure in the fire performance of any element of installed fire protection within a building, then you are likely to be found to be just as culpable as the deficient installer. You share liability for the provision of information required under Building Regulation 16B that tells the user of the building about the fire prevention measures provided in the building. Otherwise, the user cannot make an effective risk assessment under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
For more information on how we can help you please contact us.
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