Get to find out four necessary things to know about fire-rated green walls.
There have been a lot of misconceptions about the artificial green walls. Some say it contributes a considerable part to fire hazards. Some even suggest that they are neglected from interior and exterior decorations just for safety. But why should we do that? Are we to ignore the countless benefits they offer us due to this simple controversy? That’s a total NAY. That’s why we are provided with a safe solution- The Fire-rated artificial green walls.
Fire safety is a top priority in design. These Fire-rated artificial green walls are made of fire retardant chemicals. This doesn’t affect the aesthetic and realistic appeal but adds an extra layer of security and safety to our properties. So, there are a few things you need to understand about this greenery, some of which will include how they are made and their benefits. Let me help you with that, friends.
This post contains four different subsections, all highlighting things you will find relevant. Learn something new from each of them. I hope you do!
1. What is a fire-rated artificial green wall?
From the insight I gave in our introduction, you should be able to glimpse what this is. A fire rated artificial green wall is a type of artificial foliage with a mesh of Fire retarding chemicals and the polyethylene ingredients in the manufacturing of the product. This is done generally to ensure safety and protection against fire hazards.
With these, you can stay rest assured that this artificial foliage will not contribute to a fire outbreak. Even if there is one, it will not cause an increase as Fire can’t spread through them. These chemicals prevent the polyethylene from burning. Also, substances prevent them from wearing or washing. That’s a win-win!
We will take a look at how these ordinary vertical gardens can become Fire-rated. This happens during the manufacturing process, and it is not that big a complicated process. Take a look!
2. How are artificial foliage made fire retardant?
There are two different methods used to make artificial green walls fire retardant. One is done during the production process (in the injection molding phase), while the other is done post-production. They are;
Inherently Fire Retardant (IFR) method
This is the most effective and safest way to make artificial foliage fire retardant. Here, the fire safe chemicals are blended into the PVC, plastic, or fabric while these materials are still in the raw form. During this process, you can inject the retardant chemicals into the raw materials which you want to use to fabricate the foliage. Remember that this is done during the injection molding process, while the foliage is under production.
Topically treating fire retardant method.
This is a method of spraying or dipping the plants into the fire retardant chemicals (called the topical fire retardants). This method may seem really straightforward but isn’t the most recommended. It comes with a lot of drawbacks, which makes the usage a bit disadvantageous.
Artificial foliage treated with this method doesn’t last for a long time. It weakens the surface of the plant and causes some further damages.
To know more about the two methods, I have prepared a side by side comparison table for you. From this, you can learn more details about them. Here;
|Inherently treated artificial foliage.||Topically treated artificial foliage.|
|The chemicals are impregnated into the plant’s raw material during the manufacturing process.||Treating the plants by dipping or spraying the topical fire retardant chemicals on them|
|Plants made with this technique will not wash or wear off.||Those from this will wear off quickly and will require periodic and continuous reapplication of the chemicals.|
|Fire protection remain consistent and efficient||Fire protection is inconsistent|
|It has a smooth surface, which reduces the buildup of dust on the covers.||The surface is tacky and will attract a lot of dust to the plant.|
|Bright and colorful appearance.||Discolored and spotty appearance|
|Visually sound faux plants in structure and appearance. It can withstand residential and commercial use.||Visually degraded plants which may not withstand commercial application.|
From all that, the difference is definitely apparent. Artificial green walls treated with the ITF method are the most durable and long-lasting.
3. What are the top benefits of Fire-rated artificial green walls?
Fire-rated artificial green walls are the best you can invest in. This is no hype! They are very advantageous in both durability and safety. Here’s why I am so passionate about them (and why you should be too);
Excellent safety assurance
Safety First! Artificial green walls without fire security are honestly a pain in the neck. Simultaneously, the Fire-rated ones keep you at peace with the space you’re creating, even if it is to be placed close to a very high heat source or fireplace. You can stay assured that the plant is at risk of getting burnt (unlike those that aren’t fire rated).
They also are at a lower risk of getting damaged by other sources other than Fire. Such may include fluid spillage or dust accumulation.
Minimal care and maintenance
Fire-rated green walls are straightforward to maintain. Once they are installed, they require very little attention. Very little is left to do with them while you enjoy the aesthetic benefits.
Because they do not attract a lot of dust (IFR), you might need a simple maintenance schedule to clean them occasionally. You also don’t need to worry about fertilizing, pruning, and trimming. They do not grow, so all of that wouldn’t be required. This also means you wouldn’t need to bother about watering them, which is a whole load of work. They don’t require water or sunlight to stay fresh.
Unlike the living green walls at risk of pest and vermin infestation, they don’t suffer such a disadvantage. This means that you wouldn’t need the extra cost of fumigation and pest control. There’s so much to save up!
Another full advantage is that they are not affected by seasons. Unfavorable Humidity, climate, and temperature can do a great deal of damage to living green walls. In contrast, artificial green walls (with the extra fire retardant protection) are not affected by seasons and weather conditions.
Versatile, realistic, and durable
The Fire-rated green walls are very versatile, and they can be placed anywhere. This is an advantage you can get from other options. Those without fire retardants might not be suitable for outdoor usage as excess sunlight can damage or fire outbreaks. However, in the case of the fire retardant options, they can be used for outdoor and indoor or residential am commercial purposes—no restrictions to where they can be placed.
They are also very true to life. They add a natural green ambiance to your space. And if it’s a splash to nature you desire, this is one of the best options amongst the others.
4. What are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about Fire rated foliage?
a. Why are non-Fire-rated artificial green walls dangerous?
They are very risky to be used because they are made from silk, plastic, or polyester, which is susceptible to burning. They are materials in which flames or ignitions can spread very quickly. Not just those, the smoke that may erupt from them while they burn are very poisonous. This is why Fire-rated green walls are recommended to that regular artificial foliage.
b. Are there Fire resistant tests for silk foliage?
Yes! There are two main tests required for the silk foliage. They are the NFPA 701 and the ASTM E84. Any of these tests are required depending on some factors. They are both sited by the state’s fire codes: the international fire code and the NFPA 1 fire code.
c. What is measured in the tests for fire resistance of artificial green walls?
This is dependent on the type of test that is run. The test should measure either flame propagation or smoke generation.
The test should measure the rate at which Fire can spread through the plants or how much smoke is generated if the plant is ignited. As I stated, it depends on the type of test you run on the plants.
d. What body enforces the use of Fire-rated artificial foliage?
That would be the Local Fire Official who has jurisdiction over the building’s fire code and conduct. They would run a resistance test to validate the resistance certification. It must meet up to the fire code requirements, and the products must comply with the fire codes.
It’s a Wrap!
Now you know how important it is that you choose the Fire-rated foliage over the counterparts. For safety, protection, easy maintenance, this is a reliable option. All you need to do is purchase a product from a trusted manufacturer, as the quality will differ.
Ask for proof of the plants being Fire-rated, and it would be best if you went for the option of those made from the IFR method. This is more realistic and safer.
I sincerely hope you make the right choice by opting for the Fire rated artificial green walls!