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Advice Centre

Fireseals Direct - Advice Centre

  • Easter 2019 Closing Dates

    Please note we close at 16.45 on Thursday 18th April for Easter Weekend.  We re-open at 07.45 on Tuesday 23rd April.


    The earliest delivery date for any orders placed on Thursday 18th April to Tuesday 23rd April is Wednesday 24th April.



  • What is Intumescent? Your questions answered...

    What is Intumescent?

    A common question we get asked is “What is intumescent”, or “What does intumescent do?”  Let’s explain…

    An ‘intumescent’ is a material that swells up and expands on exposure to heat.  There are a few main types of intumescent, but most can be classified as ‘soft char’ or ‘hard char’.

    Soft char intumescents, such as ammonium polyphosphate, produce a light, fluffy char that produces very little pressure but is an excellent insulator.  This is often used in fire protection for glazing, as high pressure could shatter the glass and make the situation a lot worse.  Soft char intumescent materials are also suitable for spraying so are commonly found in spray mastic and fire protective coatings for structural steel.

    Hard char intumescents are the most common, and include sodium silicate and graphite based materials.  These produce a much higher pressure and substantial char, and are used in applications like plastic pipe fire stopping and intumescent strip for around fire doors.


    How do they work?

    In the case of an ammonium polyphosphate based intumescent, this is combined with other starch-based materials to cause swelling.  When the ammonium polyphosphate is exposed to heat, it starts to decompose and produce CO2, helping to prevent it from burning.  The resulting char protects the underlying layers from heat and fire.  It also allows for quite significant movement of components during a fire without compromising the protection.

    Sodium silicates and graphite based intumescent materials contain hydrates, that turn to gas when they get hot, thus expanding and forming a seal.  Sodium silicate intumescents have a very low activation temperature of just 110-120°C, whilst intercalated graphite intumescents start activating at around 200°C.  Graphite intumescents are extremely flexible, so are commonly used in pipe wraps and collars.


    What do they do?

    Intumescent products form a vital part of fire protection in a building.  Fire travels extremely rapidly, and finds any small gap or hole to spread through.  These gaps or holes must be protected, and by doing so with an intumescent material the passage of smoke and fire through a building is limited or even prevented, helping to contain the fire and ensure safe and rapid evacuation of the building.


    Key Dates For Your 2018/19 Diary 

    Q: What day date you close for 2018 and re-open for 2019?

    A: Please see our 2018 / 2019 open hours below:

    Monday 17th December 07:45 – 16:45
    Tuesday 18th December  07:45 – 16:45
    Wednesday 19th December  07:45 – 16:45
    Thursday 20st December  07:45 – 16:45
    Friday 21st December  07:45 – 16:45
    Monday 24th December  07:45 – 16:00
    Tuesday 25th December – Tuesday 1st January CLOSED
    Wednesday 2nd January 2019  07:45 – 16:45


    Q. What is the last day to order for 2018 delivery?

    A.  Deliveries via Courier to UK Mainland
    Last order date Friday 21st December* for delivery Monday 24th December 2018

    *Orders must be placed by 16:00

    Any orders placed for UK Mainland after 16:00 Friday 21st December 2018 will be delivered Wednesday 2nd January 2019

  • Lorient Batwing Seals explained


    Simple, effective and easy to use...

    The Lorient Batwing seals provide an innovative and unique solution, especially for upgrading and retro-fitting to fire resisting doorsets.

    Being surface mounted, they are quick and easy to fit, and provide a fire-rated smoke, acoustic, draught and even light seal to a fire door.

    • Curved fin shape minimises open/closing resistance.
    • Flexible elastomeric fins ensure the original shape is maintained, providing ongoing performance and durability in service.
    • Symmetrical design ensures fins are always in contact with two surfaces of door leaf, creating an air chamber to provide excellent acoustic performance.
    • Tested in accordance with BS EN ISO 140-3: 1995.
    • Effective smoke seal up to 200°C.
    • Variety of standard colours to blend with door designs.
    • Fully tested for performance and durability under the third party certification schemes CERTIFIRE (CF136) and British Board of Agrément.

    Available from stock in most sizes, in Black, Brown and White.


    View the full range of Lorient Batwing Seals here.




  • Pipe Collar or Pipe Wrap – which do I use?

    Intumescent pipe collars and intumescent pipe wraps essentially do the same job – they protect service penetrations, typically plastic pipes, at the point where they go through a fire compartment wall or floor.  They both will achieve up to 4 hours’ fire rating.

    So what’s the difference?

    A pipe collar can be fitted in nearly all applications, and is extremely universal.  The metal ‘band’ round the outside of the collar means when the intumescent material starts to expand with the heat of the fire, it is unable to expand outwards.  It exerts tremendous pressure on the plastic pipe and literally crushes it inwards, and completely seals the hole.  The fire is unable to pass through the impenetrable barrier of the activated intumescent material.


    A pipe wrap achieves the same end result, but it has no band around it.  Thus it needs to be inserted within a solid construction masonry wall so that the intumescent can only expand inwards and seal the hole.  If you just fit the wrap around the pipe and leave it ‘in the open’ the intumescent will simply expand into thin air and achieve nothing.


    Plasterboard partitions are a typical example of where you must use a pipe collar – a wrap will not work at all.  Pipe collars must also be used in plaster/timber ceilings and floors.

    So why not just use pipe collars for all applications?  Well, you can indeed, but pipe wraps have some trump cards to play!  For a start, they are considerably cheaper to buy.  They are also pretty much invisible when installed carefully.  A pipe collar, by comparison, is extremely visible (although some argue this is a good thing).  And don’t forget that if a pipe is fitted nice and tight to a wall, you often can’t physically get a pipe collar round the pipe, so a wrap can be used instead.

    It’s also worth bearing in mind that if the fire protection is being retro fitted, that is that the plastic pipes are already in place, it’s often easier to install pipe collars as it’s extremely difficult to open up the hole in the masonry big enough to slide a wrap in.

    There’s no hard and fast rules, and the multitude of possible applications makes it quite complicated.  If you’re stuck why not give our technical helpline a call on 029 2086 8333.

  • The Dangers of Cutting Corners with your Fire Doors

    OK - you've heard us say it before.  You've heard many people say it before.  And we're going to keep saying it - Fire Doors play a vital part in life safety and fire containment within a building.

    There are many examples of how effective Fire Doors are should a fire occur, including the recent fire at Gower College in Swansea.  South Wales Fire & Rescue Service credit the effective Fire Doors for minimising the spread of the fire.  Deputy chief fire officer Mick Crennell said, "I would urge everyone to keep their fire doors closed, they really are there for a reason and they really do work."

    But many times the little details are overlooked.  Corners are cut, and expensive Fire Doors are rendered useless due to incorrect installation or non-fire-rated ancillaries fitted.  The weak spots on a Fire Door are the edges, and any hole or aperture cut into the door, for example vision panels, locks and latches, letterplates and ventilation grilles.  If these aren't properly fire rated, tested and certified there can be lethal consequences in a fire.

    BWF Certifire put together this amazing and enlightening video (if a little scary) to show just how dangerous a compromised Fire Door can be.  Sit back, enjoy, and remember - NEVER CUT CORNERS WHEN WORKING WITH FIRE DOORS!


    BWF Fire Doors



    We have a wide range of ancillaries for Fire Doors available on our website - all properly fire tested and certified by 3rd party accreditation bodies.  Our range includes:

    Order your Fire Door seals

  • Evacuation Plans – Have You Considered Everyone?

    No matter what type of business you run, or where you are based, you need to ensure that you have a full evacuation plan in place should a fire or other issues arise which require everyone to leave the building. Continue reading

  • Fire Door Hinges explained

    We often get asked, "Why do I need special hinges for my fire door?"  "Why are Fire Door Hinges so big and expensive?"

    fire door hinge A Grade 13 Fire Door Hinge in Polished Stainless Steel


    Let's explain a few of the main points...
    Continue reading

  • FAQs on Staff Fire Training and Your Responsibilities

    There are some rules and regulations that must be adhered to in regards to training your staff on fire safety. In this recent post, we take you through the most common questions that we get asked when it comes to training and responsibility.

    Continue reading

  • How To Test A Fire Alarm - Checking & Maintenance Tips

    Fire detection equipment is an essential part of any safety plan. Our guide looks at how to test a fire alarm, legal obligations & more. Read here in full.

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