What Industries Should Invest in Fireproof Coatings?

Posted on Tuesday, July 14, 2020

What Industries Should Invest in Fireproof Coatings?

In any facility, safety should be a top priority. Indeed, tragedies and accidents in the past have led the U.S. to create new, stricter regulations regarding safety protocols for buildings across industries. These codes may differ slightly from one facility to the next, depending on its specific operations. Still, all buildings are susceptible to catching fire (especially those that regularly deal with combustible chemicals, high temperatures, and open flames) and must feature some kind of protection against this hazard.

Fireproof coatings (also known as intumescent coatings) can be used to prevent or mitigate the spread of fire inside a facility. In the U.S. these special coatings are becoming more common each year, and as safety regulations tighten, they’re bound to make their way into more and more facilities. But how do these coatings work? Does every industry or building require fireproof coatings? And which industries should invest in these protective coatings the most?

How Do Fireproof Coatings Work?

At first glance, intumescent coatings look like standard industrial paint. However, these coatings are composed of different materials. They consist of four main components: an acid donor like ammonium polyphosphate; a carbon source such as pentaerythritol; a blowing agent like melamine; and a binding polymer, such as vinyl acetate copolymer. When fire reaches intumescent paint, the binding agent begins to soften. Then, the chemicals underneath heat up and react into an insulating foam (char) that protects the underlying surface from damage and slows down the spread of fire.

Which Industries Require Fireproof Coatings?

In truth, every building could benefit from fireproofing services and intumescent coatings. That said, some industries require this level of fireproofing for a number of reasons, and sometimes to comply with legal regulations. Here are just a handful of industries that should (or are obliged to) invest in fireproof coatings.

Construction

Those in the construction business must be well aware of all relevant fire safety codes. As such, they will commonly implement fireproof coatings and other fireproofing methods. This not only protects them on the job but also protects those who will use the newly-built facility while increasing its structural integrity.

Oil and Gas (Petrochemicals)

Fuel refineries naturally handle loads of combustible chemicals and endure high temperatures. There can be no room for error in these factories. Intumescent coatings greatly reduce the risk of fire and explosion in these facilities.

Manufacturing

The manufacturing sector covers a lot of different industries, such as automotive, plastics, food, furniture, etc. Fireproofing is a must in all of these plants. After all, machinery can break down and overheat, sparks can fly and catch fire, ovens can malfunction, and the list goes on. Intumescent coatings should play a part in a manufacturer’s industrial painting investment.

Education

Schools house hundreds, if not thousands of students and teachers multiple days a week. Maintaining a safe educational environment is crucial for protecting so many lives. Fireproof coatings give students and staff peace of mind during the busy school day.

Other industries that should invest in fireproof coatings include:

  • Healthcare

  • Apartment/Residential

  • Restaurant/Hospitality

  • Prisons

  • Religious Centers

  • Retail Stores

  • And more

Investing in fireproof coatings for your facility is a smart, safe move, and it might be necessary, depending on the regulations to which you’re beholden. These coatings make up just one of many safety protocols you should incorporate, such as safety striping, safety education, waterproofing, air quality control, disinfecting procedures, and more.

Kaloutas is New England's premier contractor for commercial & industrial painting, flooring, and related services. Established in 1987, Kaloutas has become a trusted resource for general contractors, facilities managers, and building owners from Connecticut to Maine. Our team prides itself on high quality workmanship, jobs done on time & budget, and tackling complex projects that other contractors don't have the experience or resources to handle. Contact us today for a painting or flooring estimate, or give us a call at 978-532-1414 to learn more.

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