Why Your Commercial Facility Needs Humidity Control During Commercial Fireproofing Spray Insulation
Moisture might not seem like a major threat to your facility, but in large enough amounts, it can become a menace. Every commercial property needs to control its internal temperature and humidity to protect its assets and maintain a comfortable work environment. Humidity control is important for specific applications as well, such as fireproofing. Indeed, failing to consider the amount of moisture in your air can cause all sorts of problems both during and after fireproofing. Here’s why your commercial facility needs humidity control during the application of commercial fireproofing spray insulation.
Benefits of Humidity Control During Commercial Fireproofing Spray Insulation
Prolonged Drying of Fireproofing Materials Can Damage Structures
Spray fireproofing can take anywhere from 14 – 28 days to fully cure. During this time, it’s imperative that nothing interferes with the material’s drying process. As you might imagine, moisture plays a major role in how quickly (and properly) fireproof coatings dry. If there’s more moisture in the air, it will take longer for sprayed fireproof coatings to dry. As a result, these coatings are at a greater risk of dripping and sagging, which can gradually wear down the surfaces they’re meant to protect, such as wood and steel. The increased time to dry leaves the fireproofing susceptible to damage. Also, depending upon the specified material, the fireproofing may continue to breakdown if exposed to humidity and fail inspection or void the manufacturer warranty. Moreover, the passivation qualities of spray fireproofing may diminish when applied in highly humid environments; passivation is a process that protects metal materials from corroding. In other words, high humidity levels can increase the risk of corrosion despite the protective barrier provided by fireproof coatings.
Stop Microbes in Their Tracks
Where there’s water, there’s the potential for life. It’s no wonder, then, that highly humid environments attract microbial growth, allowing these organisms (fungi, bacteria, etc.) to thrive. Sprayed fireproofing may protect surfaces from flames, but it won’t prevent microorganisms from taking over, especially if it takes a long time to dry. This can quickly lead to discoloration and an undesirable aesthetic. Maintaining proper humidity control during and after fireproofing will mitigate the risk of microbial growth and help expedite the drying process.
Longer Dry Times Can Cause Delays
Structural damage and microbial growth aren’t the only issues associated with high humidity and fireproofing spray insulation – time is also of the essence. Whether your commercial facility is undergoing a construction project or various repairs, high levels of humidity and slow drying can lead to all sorts of delays. Contractors must do their best to adhere to a strict schedule, and if even one project is taking longer than expected (e.g., prolonged fireproof curing), it can throw off every other aspect of the entire endeavor. Ultimately, these delays will interfere with your operations, costing you precious time and money. Investing in proper humidity control will help everyone stay on schedule so you don’t have to worry about unwarranted downtime or shutdowns.
The Bottom Line
Any wet material takes longer to dry in an environment riddled with moisture, and spray fireproof insulation is no exception. The typical cure times for these products are lengthy enough – there’s no need to extend that process further, especially if it puts your facility at risk of structural damage, microbial growth, and/or costly delays. Your fireproofing contractor should be well aware of the ways in which temperature, air exchanges, and humidity interact with their spray fireproofing applications. Likewise, your contractors should inform you that intumescent fireproofing is typically a better option than cementitious fireproofing in areas that harbor more moisture.
Rest assured that Kaloutas has the knowledge, resources, and experience to properly fireproof your facility in accordance with your unique schedule and needs to minimize downtime and ensure the best outcomes. To learn more about us and all that we do, contact us online or give us a call at 978−532−1414 today.