Fire-prevention polyurethane foam: characteristics and application

Fire-prevention polyurethane foam: characteristics and application

Fire-prevention polyurethane foam is type of polyurethane foam which has fire-resistant and fire-resistant properties. Thanks to these qualities it is used on special objects where strict observance of fire-prevention requirements is necessary. Foam has the special characteristics assuming specific instructions for use. This article will tell about kinds of polymer, features of application and criteria for selection of material.

Fire-resistant polyurethane foam: characteristics and properties

Specific substance with fire-resistant properties was invented by group of scientists under the direction of Otto Bayer in 1947 absolutely accidentally – during experiences with polyurethane. Then it was difficult to assume that polyurethane foam will find broad application in construction 70 years later.

Initially similar materials applied in industrial construction as insulating plates. In 70 years the English company “Royal Chemical Industry” has invented cylinders with polyurethane foam, and their mass production has begun in 80 years in Sweden.

The main properties of fire-resistant foam are thermal stability and ability to resist to fire. Now it is quite often applied to finishing of slopes in apertures in installation time of fire-protective doors. Nonflammable substance which fills slots creates tightness and in case of fire interferes with penetration of smoke and ashes into the room. Such requirements are met to fire safety regulations.

Fire-resistant foam is not much more expensive than similar products which are used in mounting finishing work therefore it is often applied not only for the intended purpose, but also to other construction needs, even when to this object high requirements of fire resistance are not imposed.

Composition of polyurethane fire-resistant foam and regulatory requirements to it

High fire-resistant and technical characteristics of polyurethane foam are provided by its structure where enter:

  • the catalysts accelerating expansion that provides possibility of use of foam even at subzero temperature;
  • the frothing substances affecting speed of hardening and degree of porosity of foam;
  • the stabilizing components providing uniform distribution of foam to surfaces;
  • the gas which is pushing out substance from bottle.

Helpful advice! Buying fire-prevention foam, it is necessary to be convinced surely available the certificate of conformity. This document confirms its fire-resistant properties.

The main thing and, perhaps, the only requirement to this type of fire-prevention products provided by the normative document is the level of stability to fire.

In the document techniques of testing of building constructions, materials which are applied in construction and finishing of constructions, on fire resistance are considered. So, fire-resistant polyurethane foam has limit of fire resistance of EI. This parameter demonstrates passing of check of substance on integrity and ability to keep heat-insulating properties under intensive fire influence. The corresponding indicator at products presented at the market depends on its look and fluctuates from 60 to 360 minutes.

Technical characteristics of fire-resistant polyurethane foam

Practically in each type of construction jobs, whether it be laying of engineering networks or cable communications, formation of openings is provided. In case of ignition not closed up apertures become direct way of spread of fire to adjacent rooms. In order to avoid deplorable effects in mounting use fire-prevention plaster or special material from basalt. For the purpose of protection directly of communications and prevention of advance of fire use fire prevention devices and fire-resistant couplings.

Now along with the listed traditional materials fire-resistant foam which has managed to prove perfectly is used. Characteristics of polyurethane foam demonstrate to it.

The main of them:

  1. The high resistance to fire exposure noted by EI indicator (up to 360 minutes). It means that foam is comparable with fire-prevention wall.
  2. The high adhesion – is well linked practically to all construction materials. This substance is combined with brick, steel concrete, metalwork, slag stones, cement slurry, plaster, glass, the plaster and even ceramics used in finishing of walls and for flooring.
  3. Foam does not flow down in the course of drawing it on wall.
  4. Use of mounting substance allows to make work quickly and does not demand special qualification skills.
  5. Material easily gets into apertures and openings and spreads on all their volume, well fills all cavities.
  6. Fast hardening of foam happens at temperature from-18 to +35 °C that reduces work performance terms.
  7. Material has no property of secondary expansion.

Utilization properties of nonflammable polyurethane foam

Polyurethane fire-resistant foam serves long and reliably. It keeps the characteristics in the conditions of low air humidity. Unlike other substances foam does not crack under the influence of dry air. To the contrary, in rooms with the high level of humidity it does not inflate and also on it fungi and mold are not formed.

Helpful advice! Choosing products, it is necessary to decide on its target purpose. For fixing of door case or the window block there is enough foam with indicator of fire resistance of EI 60. The sealing of joints in overlappings on places of crossing of flue with the furnace, fireplace or the boiler demands more reliable material. In this case it is better to buy foam with resistance to EI 240 fire.

Fire-resistant foam reliably serves even in not heated warehouses, auxiliary facilities, engineering and industrial rooms. Thanks to the broad temperature range of operation which is from-40 to +100 °C substance can be applied in different weather conditions, even in areas with considerable temperature drops.

Owing to high heat-insulating properties foam does not pass air, warmly and also smoke and gas mixes. This quality is very important in respect of fire safety. On material the surface protective film – approximately within 10 minutes is very quickly formed. One bottle of 750 ml under pressure leaves 65 l of foam.

What polyurethane foam is better: types, types, categories of application

When choosing polyurethane fire-prevention foam the main attention should be paid to in what rooms and on what sites its application is planned. At the same time it is important to consider possibility of periodic heating of design and probability of emergence of ignition. These qualities affect standard and specific distinctions of foam.

Depending on possibility of use of substance at the subzero temperature of air fire-resistant foam is divided into categories of application:

  • at temperature not below +5 °C;
  • at temperature from-5 to -10 °C.

Types of foam are distinguished also on the fire resistance level which has to correspond to the level of fire resistance of doors. For example, marking on EI 30 penalty fee, provides its application in rooms where at the same time there can be about 300 people and fast evacuation is possible.

Polyurethane foam has three classes of fire resistance:

  • class B3 – combustible foam;
  • class B2 – the combustible, but quickly fading foam;
  • class B1 – nonflammable.

Fire-prevention polyurethane foam belongs to class B1.

Considering availability of active components, foam is separated into one – and two-component. Single-component fire-resistant foam stiffens under the influence of water. Therefore at its use the surface is previously moistened. Two-component fire-prevention foam is capable to harden without moisture. Use of such substance is possible even in the winter.

Producers, for the purpose of ensuring fire resistance, add to composition of foam special chemicals – fire-retarding agents. Their names and proportions do not disclose in commercial interests. Polymerization of fire-resistant foam happens owing to chemical reactions and at influence of air and moisture. Products of different producers differ in technical characteristics.

Fire-prevention polyurethane foam: characteristics and application

Producers of polyurethane foam: price and product quality

Modern market of producers of polyurethane foam quite extensive. Both the foreign, and domestic production is widespread. We will consider the most popular companies producing polyurethane foam below.

It is interesting! Practically all import products are turned out in the unified volume of cylinders in 750 ml and provide use of polyurethane foam under gun.

Russia manufactures single-component fire-resistant Profflex Firestop foam. It is made according to the German license. Substance is characterized by low secondary expansion and fast curing at coefficient of fire resistance of EI 240, has productivity (foam exit) to 65 l. More advanced analog — Proffelex Fireblok 65 foam.

Special demand polyurethane foam Makroflex has 750 ml. Substance is characterized by high fire resistance (up to 240 minutes) and corresponds to class B1. It is possible to cause it only at temperature from +5 °C. Demands protection against ultra-violet radiations.

Polyurethane foam Technonicol 70 Professional – the single-component polyurethane material which is characterized by good expansion and high volume of exit. Substance has good adhesion to the majority of building materials. Application – sealing, heat insulation and noise isolation of seams and apertures, mounting of parts in finishing work.

Foam fire-prevention professional Soudafoam fr gun is manufactured in Belgium and has the highest rate of fire resistance – to EI 360. This is peculiar champion among fire-resistant foams. Such quality influences products price.

Fire-prevention polyurethane foam: application instructions

Information on how to use polyurethane foam, is placed on cylinders. It is possible to find set of useful tips with object lessons where use of foam in the course of performance of different installation works is shown in the Internet.

The main operational stages of substance can be stated in several points:

  • The cylinder needs to be warmed up in hot water and it is good to stir up. Thanks to it gas and liquid components will mix up, and foam exit as much as possible will increase.
  • Further the cylinder is got on tube or established on gun.
  • The surface before putting foam is cleaned from dust and dirt and moistened with water.
  • Apply foam on surface. For this purpose it is necessary to calculate foam exit dosage from cylinder. The gun will help with it. The bottle during putting substance should be held the valve down.
  • Foam drying up stage. As a rule, on it 6–8 hours are necessary. Duration of process depends on the volume of substance and can reach till 12 o’clock.
  • After foam drying up excesses cut off sharp knife or file.

Polyurethane foam – the material sensitive to ultraviolet and collapsing under its influence. Therefore the polyurethane sealant used on the street after drying needs to be covered with special solution.

What to purify polyurethane foam with: removal of the remains from clothes, hands and tools

After use of polyurethane sealant there is question: than to wash polyurethane foam? It appears, there is set of answers and useful recommendations which depend on specific situation.

Helpful advice! To avoid dilemma, than to wipe polyurethane foam from hands, it is important not to allow hits of substance on body. For this purpose it is necessary to work accurately, using special clothes and protective gloves.

Sometimes, even at application of gloves, sealant gets on skin, then it is necessary to solve, than to wash polyurethane foam from hands. Special solvent which is used for washing of professional gun will help to get rid of substance.

In solution, than to wipe polyurethane foam from skin, make-shifts will help. It is possible to wash away substance kerosene or to remove it by means of the napkin, the wetted in the warmed-up sunflower oil. But for this purpose it is necessary to have patience and to take means about half an hour on skin. Also normal table salt if it it is accurate to rub the contaminated places will help. As solvent – it medicine will help to get rid of pollution quickly.

If sealant has dried up, then it is necessary not to wash, and to purify polyurethane foam from clothes. How to make it? At first construction material should be eliminated manually. Further it is possible to use the above-stated solutions.

Before wiping polyurethane foam from door or from other surface, it is better to wait until it stiffens, and only after that accurately to remove the dried-up material thin stationery knife.

Gun for polyurethane foam: price, rules of use and device

Use of gun provides most of producers of polyurethane foam. It is important to note that this tool considerably simplifies work and helps to spend substance most rationally as allows to adjust material dosage.

By means of gun it is easy to stop foam supply just having released the actuating lever. At the same time in the device foam does not stiffen because the needle reliably blocks intake of air owing to what there is no need for cleaning of gun. In case of need it can be replaced quickly.

Thanks to gun it is possible to apply foam with one hand, and in the most uncomfortable positions. At qualitative models of part, as a rule, wearproof. The correct and competent operation guarantees long life cycle.

Guns of import production – Intertool, by Sigma, Tope are most extended. These models differ in the low price at quite acceptable product quality.

Guns for the polyurethane foam Hilti, Neo, Yato – higher class of the device. Enjoy popularity at professional builders. One such tool it is possible to apply more than one hundred cylinders in the course of use.

What gun for polyurethane foam is better: selection criteria and rules of use

In the choice of gun material of production of different parts acts as the main criterion. It is desirable that parts had teflon or ftoroplastovy covering of parts thanks to which foam will not stick to them. It several times will facilitate cleaning of product.

Helpful advice! It is possible to define availability of the ftoroplast, having run fingers over surface. At touch the feeling of greasy film has to appear. At the same time it is important not to confuse this covering with conservation lubricant.

Component parts of gun have to be made of the metal providing its durability and durability. It is necessary that the handle had the convenient form did not “stick” into palm, and conveniently lay. The trigger on the end has to have small bend that will prevent finger jumping off. Its length testifies to that how many fingers will be involved when pressing.

Upon purchase it is necessary to be careful of too easy or heavy gun and also it is necessary to pay attention on the holder of cylinder and the valve with the placed locking ball in the center. You should not buy gun with plastic ball of the valve.

Availability of the doser of foam which regulates its giving is important. Eventually, the gun has to be clean, without technology dirt and garbage. The trigger of qualitative gun undergoes testing at the plant. Presence of pressure can be checked pressing.

It is necessary to test the tool for tightness by means of washing for gun for polyurethane foam which part acetone is. It is always desirable to have washing fluid near at hand. For check on gun the cylinder with liquid is established, further the tube of gun is cleaned with several pressing of trigger from conservation lubricant and filled with liquid. Then the cylinder is removed and left for couple of days. After term when pressing trigger at hermetic gun pressurized fluid will escape from gun.

How to use gun for polyurethane foam

The surface assumed for putting foam should be moistened with water. Otherwise dust will create insulation course, and foam just will not stick. Further by means of trial drawing it is necessary to adjust supply of substance to necessary flow and quantity. At the same time it is necessary to consider extent of expansion of the used foam.

During replacement of cylinder it is necessary to be convinced that previous it is completely empty. It is necessary to stir up new bottle well (about 15 seconds). Then the protective cap is removed, the old cylinder is removed and new is established.

It is better to store gun together with cylinder, otherwise it needs to be washed with special liquid carefully. The cylinder in storage time has to contain a little foam that substance in gun has not stiffened.

At reuse the gun should be stirred up, cleaned nozzle from the dried-up foam. In case of availability it is necessary to remove it by means of knife, trying not to damage gun. Pressing of trigger foam is produced until the necessary flow is formed.

Important! Removing cylinder from gun, it is necessary to remove valves of cylinder and gun from the face to avoid foam emission (even if the gun and cylinder are completely empty).

It is desirable to make washing of gun once a month. If long time do not use the tool, then it needs to be preserved. For this purpose on it apply thin film of technical vaseline.

Polyurethane foam is widely applied in different construction jobs. This sealant is often simply irreplaceable. Fire-resistant material is of particular importance, in particular at installation of doors and windows or sealing of apertures after mounting of communications. The correct use of polyurethane foam and knowledge of technical characteristics on substance which have been described in this article, guarantee high quality of work.

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