Everything You Need to Know About Fireproof and Intumescent Type Paints

Whether in a new or old building, under construction or renovation, the risk of fire remains one of the major concerns. It is with this in mind that paints of a new kind have been developed, such as those called fireproof or intumescent, which cannot participate in extinguishing the fire, but which can slow down its effects on the metal structure frameworks.

Fireproof Paint

Fireproof paint is a coating whose action can be similar to that of a waterproofing agent. It must be applied according to strict rules to be perfectly effective. By covering the materials, it delays their combustion in the event of a fire. There are different types of fireproof paints, which adapt to very specific materials: the same paint will not be as suitable for a wooden support as for a metal support. This type of paint exists in a whole palette of colors to best meet your needs and desires.

Intumescent Paint

In the same way as fireproof paint, intumescent paint is part of the passive protection against fires. It can be used on all kinds of support, even if it is most often found covering steel. The formula of this fire-fighting paint contains particles whose particularity is to increase the volume under the effect of high heat. Thus, a layer of this expansive paint 1 cm thick can reach up to 50 cm if subjected to intense heat. The protective shield thus formed by this paint will allow the material on which it is deposited not to deform too quickly in order to keep the structure of the building intact until the people present are evacuated and the emergency services intervene. Likewise for the other media, the combustion will be pushed back and the spread of the fire slowed down.

Note: it is worth remembering that steel begins to deform at temperatures around 500°C. Thanks to an intumescent paint and the insulating foam it develops, the rise in temperature can be delayed by 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on the thickness of the layer that has been applied to the support.


Protect yourself from fire by applying a chemical product to flammable materials that retards or prevents combustion. A primary form of passive protection, the operation nevertheless responds to inevitable legal and structural requirements.

From insulating foam to the steel beams of buildings, from the Christmas tree to structural wood, from paper to textiles, there are many materials that are flammable or can be deformed by a fire. Modern life and the appearance of new products, even more receptive to fire by their composition, have only multiplied these dangers, especially in the industrial or construction sectors. It is therefore essential to protect against it, by various fireproofing methods which will aim to limit or even eradicate any phenomenon of propagation of flames or heat. Treatments are offered, ranging from paint to coatings, special liquids to coatings, with variable characteristics and effects, meeting the standards laid down by the regulations.

A flame retardant product must have the following primary qualities:
• The performance ;
• Approved and recognized by official tests ;
• Maintaining fire resistance (whether by use or aging) ;
• The respect of environment ;
• An absence of toxicity towards humans, animals or plants.

The application of this product will have the primary objective of obtaining materials that comply with fire safety legislation by influencing their behavior in fire. It can either absorb the heat, or form a carbonized protective layer slowing it down, or emit a gas stopping the progression of the flames. Its action is generally chemical, thanks to its components which can range from phosphorus to additives for synthetic polymers, passing through polyvinyl chloride and others. In the end, and in the vast majority of cases, the fireproof product subjected to heat facilitates the transformation of the support it protects into a less flammable material, via the crosslinking of the polymer chains.

Risk management today, and tomorrow!