How Are Barriers Different from Partitions?
When you own your own home, you need to ensure that your property has an efficient fire protection plan. This can help save not just the lives of those living within it but also the property’s structure. For this reason, many homebuilders and building codes recommend that you install a fire partition or fire barrier.
Fire barriers and fire partitions can be used to compartmentalize your space by keeping one area protected from another, so flames don’t spread through your home faster. While both options appear to be the same and offer many of the same benefits, they each come with their own qualifications depending on the building’s code.
With many buildings still off-limits to workers, this is a great time to consider remodeling to protect your employees and occupants further when they return to the office. But which do you choose: fire barrier vs fire partition? Understanding the difference between the two terms is essential to ensure you take full advantage of its benefits.
Fire barriers and fire partitions each have their own unique rating requirements. When people mention a fire barrier, they are referring to the structure. At a minimum, a fire barrier must have a fire rating of one hour, while a fire partition only needs to have a rating of 30 minutes for some dwellings. This is why knowing the difference between a fire barrier vs a fire partition when developing your fire plan is essential. Otherwise, you could end up installing the wrong option based on the occupancy of your home.
In comparing the functionality of a fire barrier vs a fire partition, the code for fire partitions is often less strict. If you’re a builder, you may use a fire barrier to divide the space between occupancies and protect exit enclosures in stairways. They can also help to condense the size of a fire area. On the other hand, fire partitions are often used in shopping malls, hotels, and other multi-dwelling apartments or condo blocks.
Fire barriers and fire partitions are essential to all buildings, regardless of size, especially ones with many occupants. If you own a business that handles explosive or flammable materials that can cause fires, adopt the best approach to keep your occupants safe. No matter what stage of the building process you are on, you can rest assured that you’re armed with the information to make the best choice.