Benefits > Fire Safe
Excellent Fire Protection
Wood burns! There is no denying this fact and it is partially valid for STEICO wood fibre insulating materials. However STEICO insulating materials exhibit some very positive behaviour in the event of fire. If you were a tennis ball, which insulation would you choose? Check out the video below.
Are the wood fibre insulation boards and batts fire rated?
Yes. All the wood fibre insulation products have a Euro Class E fire rating (EN 13501-1) and are completely safe to use.
All STEICO insulating materials include a natural fire protection additive. The product used is ammonium phosphate, a mineral salt produced from combining the elements phosphorus and nitrogen. Ammonium phosphate is a natural and harmless product, which is frequently used in the food industry.
In the event of a fire, a carbonisation layer quickly forms on the surface of the insulation board or mat. This carbonisation or charring acts to restrain the propagation of the fire and prevents the fast burning through the Steico product. Many conventional insulating materials are prone to melting and offer very limited fire protection.
As an organic based material, Steico insulating materials will not emit toxic gases in the event of fire, unlike many petro-chemical based insulating materials. This is an important consideration for the fire services.
Fire Rating Level ?
Fire Resistance Level (FRL) as defined in the Building Code of Australia (BCA) is the grading period in minutes for three criteria: structural adequacy, integrity and insulation, tested to AS 1530.4-1990:
“Methods for fire tests on building materials, components and structures – Fire-resistance tests of elements of building construction”.
For example a FRL of 120/60/30 means that a building component (wall or ceiling...) must maintain Structural Adequacy for 120 minutes, Integrity for 60 minutes and Insulation for 30 minutes.
Does the FRL apply to my build (Class 1a)?
Generally speaking, if you are building a Stand alone Single Dwelling (Class 1a building) then the Fire Rating Level (FRL) requirements won't apply to you.
FRL (Fire Rating Level) for Class 2 to Class 10
Regarding the Steico wood fibre insulation, in combination with suitable finishes, fire-protection structures to F90 B *(a fire would need 90 minutes in order to enter the construction) can be built with STEICO insulating materials.
Compliant with the Australian Building code
The NCC /BCA (National Construction Code / Building Code of Australia (BCA) allows building and insulation materials from overseas to be used in building construction here provided they meet the Provisional or Deemed to Satisfy criteria of the BCA.
Products from countries or zones such as Europe with reliable testing laboratories and certification programs are deemed reliable and acceptable.
All the wood fibre insulation products have a Euro Class E fire rating (EN 13501-1)
As part of your D.A. (Development Application) we recommend attaching copies of the Product Information sheets from Steico for the insulation products you are planning to insulate with.
The Steico Product Information sheet will provide your Certifier with all the technical information (structural, thermal and fire rating ) of the wood fibre insulation product.
Can I use the wood fibre insulation in a Building in a BAL zone
Yes, In general you can. Designated bushfire prone areas mean land that has been designated under a power in legislation as being subject, or likely to be subject, to bushfires.
However, legislation does not specifically address the question of thermal insulation material. Therefore, it is possible to use wood fibre insulation in a BAL zone providing it is cladded with an appropriate material suitable for that fire zone.
If you need clarification talk with your local or council Certifier.