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Logluxe article

Protecting a Wooden House from Fire

Fire protection for wooden houses will be useful for any log or timber house. The exception is glued timber, which burns slowly and tends to char on the surface. In the article, we will talk about fire-retardant paint materials for a wooden house: how protection works and what treatment options are available.

How fire protection for a wooden house works

The substance is applied as a separate layer (surface treatment) or impregnates the product throughout (medium and deep). Depending on the chemical composition, the material reacts differently to heat. Usually, several components are included in the fire retardant, which comprehensively protect the wood:

  • Decompose with the absorption of a large amount of heat. The burning zone cools down, and the wood chars only with forced intense flame treatment.

  • Expand (increase in volume multiple times). Fire-resistant foam appears on the surface, providing thermal insulation for the wood underneath. The foam restrains the spread of fire.

  • Release non-combustible gas. Oxygen is displaced, and the flame becomes less intense or extinguishes. After treatment, wood ignites more slowly, does not sustain combustion — the "activation" of protection stops or slows down the spread of fire.

See behavior comparison of treated wood (left) and non treated (right)

Fire-retardant paint materials for wood

Impregnation for previously unpainted surfaces. Impregnation during fire protection treatment of wooden structures is used to protect new buildings, elements of the roof system, and outdoor structures. Unpainted wood easily absorbs liquid, and the protective composition penetrates deeply into the fibers, providing longer-lasting protection. The impregnation is applied to the surface with a sprayer, brush, or roller. Sometimes, parts are completely immersed in a bath with fire retardant before assembly.

Fire-retardant paint materials form an additional protective film on the surface. The composition is applied in several stages with mandatory drying of each layer.

Fire retardant impregnated board cut in half
  • Antiseptic with a fire retardant has a dual effect: it protects wood from biological threats (fungus, mold, insects) and ignition. Such comprehensive impregnation reduces processing time. The composition penetrates deeper into the wood than individual protective agents.

  • Fire-resistant paint protects wooden structures without impregnation and prior surface preparation. Fire-resistant paints are used for internal work and facade finishing.

Why glued timber does not require fire protection!

  • Fire tests of walls and individual elements made of glued timber have shown that the material does not support combustion. Independent researches were conducted, followed by several proprietary tests. The timber was treated with flames in laboratory furnaces, burned with flamethrowers, and poured gasoline. In all cases, the glued laminated timber did not collapse, did not ignite, and its properties as a load-bearing structure were not altered by temperature.

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