All About Fire Ratings – Integrity, Stability and Insulation

Fire-protection is one of the most important aspects of construction.

Therefore, it is no wonder that manufacturers and thereafter installers take special care with these terms. A quick search of the term fire rating will not necessarily provide a clear answer and would take considerable time searching to a definition of the terms. To help provide clarity on this important subject lets look at what these ratings mean.

You may see a classification system where 30/30 is marked and not know whether these numbers correlate to the stability, insulation or integrity. There are many fire classifications that you may come across as a manufacturer of fire resistant building components. From “FD” for fire doors to “R”, “I” and “E” for the different fire classifications, you’re likely to come across these in your time as a manufacturer or installer for fire protective components in buildings. Here are these classifications by name and what they exactly mean.

What it all means

The 30/30 or 60/60 marking that you see on the screen or window shows the properties of non-load bearing structure elements. The first digit before the slash shows the time in minutes that the component meets the “integrity” requirements under the performance criteria, while the second number after the separator shows the “insulation”  performance.

What’s Integrity?

Integrity is one of the readings that the fire-resistant components of the building or structure have. This reading highlights the time that the component can withstand and prevent fire as well as smoke from breaching the buildings compartmentation. The letter for denoting integrity feature is “E”

What’s Insulation?

Insulation is the time reading that accompanies a fire resistant building component such as a  fire door or partition. The time reading gives an indication of how long the component can withstand the heat generated from a fire and prevent it from breaching the buildings compartmentation. “I” commonly denotes the feature of insulation in the component.

What’s Stability?

Stability is the fire protection elements ability to resist collapse as a result of the heat from a fire whilst maintaining its performance. These elements include fire rated partitions or barriers which have been designed specifically to provide compartmentation between rooms, zones or escape routes.  This reading is denoted by the letter “R”.

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