Fabrics are typically known to be combustible and will ignite when exposed to an open flame. Certain fabric types are more dangerous than others, and these can be bad for some environments where people work and in areas that host plenty of risks with flames. Many industries use flame retardant fabrics, which either come in the form of fire-resistant curtains or full-body suits worn to prevent the fire from affecting the wearer.
Many new establishments and homes invest in flame retardant curtains to limit the ignitable materials inside a room. Paper and wood are already known fire risk materials, and adding curtains can cause excessive smoke to form and prevent fire departments from accessing hard to reach areas. Here’s more information on fire-retardant materials and why you need to use these as much as possible:
What Constitutes Fire-Resistant Fabric?
These fabrics are rated based on the time it takes for the fibres to ignite and start burning, which also considers temperatures. Many high-quality materials are made in laboratories and rigorously tested to ensure proper functionality when exposed to high heat conditions. To have a rated set of fire-retardant curtains means that their manufacturers have optimised them to withstand flame exposure.
The usual testing methods used are burning the fabrics via a burner or gas flame, smouldering cigarettes, and burning wood stacks. You might also see these products in race car driver suits, especially in F1, as fires can occur during horrifying accidents. These suits have saved drivers and crews alike when cars burst into flames and reduce skin burn risks.
Two Ways Fire-Resistant Curtains are Made
There are typically two types of treatment methods used to create fireproof materials such as upholstery and curtains. The first is through a coating method with a particular chemical applied to the fabric to stiffen it for upholstery use. An issue with this technique is that it develops a thicker feel to the material, which is usable for curtains but less comfortable for furniture and other wearable pieces.
Dipping is the second method used for fabrics with natural fibres such as high wool or silk. These sheets are dipped into a chemical bath absorbed by each fibre and create the barrier between products and flames.
Either method acts as a fire suppression feature, as flames activate the chemicals and cause them to extinguish naturally. However, it’s always safe to have a fire extinguisher nearby to put out fires, as fire can still be deadly if they are in larger sizes.
Choosing Fire Retardant Products
Fire retardant curtains are a great way to keep schools, hospitals, libraries, and offices safe from potential hazards. Flames are hard to stop when they spread, and these often engulf everything in their paths. However, with curtains that refuse to catch fire, there is still a chance at containing the threat before it becomes too big to handle.
Fabric products are widely used in many schools, office spaces, establishments, and government buildings. To keep people safe, innovative technologies have to be deployed, and one of these is fire-resistant curtains to ensure a safe and workable environment.
Direct Fabrics is a supplier of various fabric products such as fire retardant curtains in the UK for all industries. We work with schools, care homes, and hotels to provide safe experiences with sanitary products. If you are looking for a way to equip your hospital or research facility fully, contact us to learn more about orders.