When faced with an awkward space it is always best to plan your approach for fitting curtain tracks and other hanging elements. A particularly difficult space to fit to is suspended ceilings. Lets go through the various information to try and assist you in your decision in buying a curtain track for your suspended ceiling.
What is a Suspended Ceiling
A suspended ceiling is a ceiling that has been installed below the standard ceiling for a space. The void created is usually used for services including air conditioning, wiring, plumbing and other elements that are needed usually in commercial sites for quick and easy access. Usually these suspended ceiling are created from a grid system that is made from a metal aluminium frame that is durable and sufficiently strong to hold the tiles plus any additional weighting.
The framework is the crucial part of whether it is possible to suspended additional weight from the tiling sections.
Main Suppliers and Manufactuers
A standard weight tolerance for these is 10kg per metre squared. Remember that when the curtain is pulled along the track it weight will be evenly distributed across the track.
Direct Fabrics recommendation is to use our cubicle curtain track for a hand drawn option. This is so that you can put the majority of the weight of the curtain on the wall shoes when the curtain is drawn back.
The weight tolerance of the ceiling grid is the main area of risk when fitting to a ceiling grid. The grid must have been installed correctly to enable it to hold the required wait of additional fixtures and fittings.
First Question that need to be asked. What is the weight capacity per metre squared of the grid?
Curtain Weight Calculations
What is the weight of my curtains. This can be calculated by knowing the full length of the curtain and doing some calculations. eg. Curtain width 400cm x Drop 200cm = 8sqm. Then knowing the fabric weight. Eg Venus fabric 280gms plus lining 200gms = 480gms. Then multiple the 2. 8 x 0.48kg = 3.84kg for the curtain.
In the picture to the left it is not a suspended ceiling but you can see that the curtains are drawn back to the wall where the wall shoes are located this means that the weight is passing through the wall not the ceiling brackets.
Fixing Curtain Tracks to Suspended Ceilings
When fixing to a suspended ceiling there are 2 options to consider.
Should i fix to a noggin above the ceiling tile?
or should i fix all the way up to the concrete or solid sealing above?
It all comes down to the weight that is going to be going through the wall and the ceiling tiles. If the weight of the curtains is our standard cubicle curtains then a standard setup will be fine using the noggin as the curtains have been chosen due to their construction of 220gms curtain fabric.
Which Tracks are Compatible with Suspended Ceilings
The majority of top fix curtain tracks are compatible with suspended ceilings. If there is considerably more weight going through the track it is advisable to use a track that can also be mounted the wall shoes on each end in order to distribute the weight more effectively across the track.
The curtain track that we recommend is the cubicle curtain track as it can have long expanses without many brackets and takes the majority of its support from each end. The cubicle track can have upto 3m without any central supports at all. It is hand operated and can be purchased here