FAQs and Guidance Notes
Q. What's the difference between 'reaction to fire' and 'fire resistance'?
WPA FR 1: Understanding Fire Protection Terms - Reaction to Fire and Fire Resistance
The WPA gets asked many questions about the fire protection of wood used in construction, this being one of the most frequent. These terms do have very different definitions and it's fundamental to know the difference when specifying flame retardants.
Q. What's does 'combustibility' actually mean in terms of building materials?
WPA FR 2: Understanding Fire Protection Terms - Combustibility
Detailing what is meant by the combustibility of wood and the test standards that define the reaction to fire properties of FR treated wood/wood based panels and building materials in general.
Q. How do I specify the Flame Retardant treated wood for its Service Environment ?
WPA FR 3: Understanding Fire Protection Terms - the Service Environment
Before specifying enhancement using a flame retardant, two specification fundamentals must be established: what reaction to fire performance is required and what is the service environment?
Q. How does the Construction Products Regulation (CPR) affect FR treated wood?
WPA FR 4: FR Rated Timber Products and the CPR
Those who manufacture construction products for which a harmonised standard exists have an obligation to draw up a Declaration of Performance (DoP) and apply a CE mark when the product is first placed on the market.
Q. What do current building regs say about timber cladding and fire treatment?
WPA FR 5: External Timber Cladding: Guidance to amended Building Regulations (09.2019)
The outcome of the UK government’s assessment of the use of different cladding materials in the wake of Grenfell confirmed that timber, where necessary enhanced with flame retardant (depending on aspect), remains fit for purpose and compliant with revised Building Regulations.
Q. What do I need to know when specifying flame retardants for timber?
WPA FR 6: FR Specification Checklist
This check-list provides a step by step guide to ensuring that fire retardant treatments for wood-based materials are fit for purpose. Further guidance on the fire protection of wood is available in the WPA FR Specification Manual.
Q. What is a Fire Test Classification Report?
WPA FR 7: Understanding a Fire Test Classification Report to EN13501-1
Evidence of the efficacy of an FR enhancement of timber, following appropriate testing, will be found in a Classification Report. This guidance note explains the elements found in a report and details what a specifier should be looking for.
Q. Who's responsible for the DoP and CE marking of Flame Retardant (FR) treated timbers?
WPA FR 8: Understanding the Flame Retardant Treated Wood Supply Chain
This note examines the different routes to Construction Product Regulation (CPR) compliance and sets out in simple terms the responsibilities of FR teated wood manufacturers, suppliers and distributors.
Q. What are my responsibilities as a distributor of FR treated wood products?
WPA FR 9: Effective Traceability throughout the Flame Retardant Treated Wood Supply Chain
This Guidance Note addresses the more complex situation where distributors/owners of non-FR stock send material to a third-party service company for FR treatment before selling it on to the open market.
Q. How can I be assured of quality flame retardant treatments and products?
WPA FR 10: Assuring Quality through the Flame Retardant Treated Wood Supply Chain
From treatment, through manufacture and distribution - see how WPA's Benchmark quality approval schemes can help.
Online Training and Webinars
Free RIBA accredited CPD: Fire Safety and FR-Rated Timber
Working with Wood Campus and Local Authority Building Control (LABC), the WPA have produced several on-line training resources. This RIBA accredited CPD can be taken free of charge (you don’t need to pre-register for access) ideal for architects, specifiers and Building Control Officers.
Webinar: Enhancing the performance of wood-based products in fire
WPA CEO - Gordon Ewbank presented at the Chartered Association of Building Engineers (CABE) on 24 July 2019.
Webinar: Understanding the Supply Chain of Flame Retardant treated wood products
WPA CEO - Gordon Ewbank presented this webinar to members of the Timber Trade Federation and WPA in May 2020.
Q. How do I mark my treated wood product to be in line with current rules?
INFORMATION: A Guide to Marking Wood (treated with a preservative or flame retardant)
From the end of the Brexit transition period (31 December 2020) new rules apply to the marking of timber in the UK outside of N. Ireland (the area called Great Britain or GB) and separately in N. Ireland. This Information document provides model examples of markings for treated timber products.
NEW Code for Construction Product Information (CPPI)
Guidance for businesses on how to implement this upcoming Code which addresses the need to ensure product information provided to buyers is clear, unambiguous, accurate, up-to-date and accessible.
Need to get in touch?
If you cannot find the answer to your question within any of the listed publications, please get in touch.
We have knowledgable people based in the UK office as well as numerous technical consultant members we can call upon to assist you.
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