Fireproof paint Australia

fireproof paint damps flames

All you need to know about fireproof paint and its benefits

Fireproof paint, or other fireproof construction materials, have been compulsory for years now in office buildings, entrance halls, parking garages, public buildings and government buildings. In Australia these coating are applied for example on Sydney Harbour Bridge and National Gallery of Victoria. In case of fire, an appropriate fireproof paint guarantees extended evacuation time, as well as vital extra time for firefighters to arrive and minimise damage.

Fire resistant paint, in general, comes with the following beneficial features:

  • Durable protection: lasts for decades and makes the surface impact resistant
  • Fire protection up to 120 minutes: conforms to British, European and international standards
  • Suitable for various substrates: fireproof paint is applicable on timber, steel, concrete, textile and plastics
  • Decorative: if applied as a top coat, it is available in every RAL colour
  • Prefab is possible: fireproof paint can be applied before or after construction

When applying a fire rated paint there are several important factors that will affect your choice: the building type determines the minimum fire protection time required of the fireproofing method (30, 60, 90, 120 minutes), and each different substrate will need a specific product and application method; fire retardant paint for timber is different to one for steel). Therefore, in this article we provide you with professional advice on what you need to know when choosing a fire resistant paint.

What defines the required fire resistance of fireproof paint for your building

If you are considering applying fireproof paint, then the structure of the building is part of what defines the coating you need; what is the purpose of the building, and how high is the building? There are three factors that determine whether the building requires 30, 60, 90 or 120 minutes of fire protection.

  1. Height: The higher the building, the stricter the requirements: a building higher than 5 metres must be at least 90 minutes fire proof. A building lower than 5 metres does not always have specified fire resistance, which is why you should always consult a specialist when considering fireproof coatings.
  2. Risk factor: In some cases the fire resistance must be 120 minutes regardless of the height and purpose of the building. This is true for industrial facilities and places with a heightened fire risk such as offshore structures and chemical processing plants. This is also true for archives, libraries, and museums where valuable information or goods are stored.
  3.  Residential / non-residential building: Are there, or could there be people sleeping in the building? Residential buildings require better fire resistance than non-residential buildings; unless an additional risk factor is involved.

Note that these three factors are effective regardless the substrate type; the same guidelines count for timber, steel and any other construction material. In general, the costs of fire resistant paint can be estimated by the amount of coating needed and the required fire resistance: the higher fire rating the coating must have, the bigger the investment to apply it.

Fire resistant paint with the right fire rating for your structure

The following table provides you with an indication of what to expect from the fire resistance required for your building type, and the resistance of fireproof paint to achieve it.

FIRE RATING requirementBuilding heightExamples
Not specified or 30 minutesLower than 5 metres: non-residential buildingsOffices, shops, and company facilities
60 minutes Lower than 5 metres: residential buildingsHotels, apartments, and health care centres
90 minutesLower than 13 metres: residential buildings Higher than 13 metres: non-residential buildingsSchools, hotels, blocks of flats, and prisons
120 minutesHigher than 13 metres: residential buildings and Buildings with high risk factorSchools, hospitals, and blocks of flats; libraries, archives and industrial premises

Always consult a specialist about fire paint to make sure your building is appropriately protected and meets the set standards. Our experts are happy to help you receive a competitive proposal for the fireproof paint you need: just send us a message by clicking the “request a quote” button at the bottom of this article.

Fire resistant paint experts & certification in Australia

fire protection association australia logo

Search for the logo of FPA Australia on the fireproof paint contractor’s website to assure quality.

We advise you to leave the application of fire resistant paint to a certified contractor. Every building has specific requirements for fire resistance, and it takes a trained professional to apply the coating effectively. The building type, substrate type, and end use requirements all impact the choice of coating and the way it is applied, including such factors as film thickness. An inspection report needs to be drawn up by the contractor, including calculations for film thickness and the suitable materials for the project.

Once the fireproof paint has been applied, you will receive a certificate. This certificate confirms that you have complied with all relevant regulations and used the correct fire rated paint. The coating must also be regularly inspected in order to detect any signs of premature deterioration and need for maintenance.

Always check for the FPA Australia membership

When looking for a contractor to apply fire proof paint, you certainly are looking for reliability and quality. The best way to assure the quality of fire resistant paint application, is to choose for an applicator who is a member of FPA Australia (Fire Protection Association).

The 2 types of fire rated paint

There are two types of fire proof paint, intumescent and fire retardant, and each has a different method of slowing down the burning process. They can be applied either independently or as a complete fire protective system.

  1. Fire retardant paint – used as undercoat for regular paint or topcoats for intumescent coating. These coatings release a flame damping gas when the temperature rises to extremes. This forms a buffer zone, protecting the surface from the flames. This is the most common type of fireproof paint used as an independent fire retardant paint for timber.
  2. Intumescent paint – almost predominantly applied as undercoat. This type of fireproof paint swells when the temperature reaches 200°C forming a solid foam-like char layer which insulates the substrate. Not only does it protect the substrate from ignition but also from the effects of the heat; steel loses its capacity to carry heavy loads starting at 300°C.

When these two coatings are applied as a complete system, the fire retardant topcoat keeps flames at distance from the surface, postponing the swelling reaction of the intumescent undercoat. Once the fire has exhausted the topcoat, the undercoat kicks in. This fire rated paint system provides necessary extra time to get a fire under control.

Fireproof paint specialists in Australia

Depending on the substrate material, there are several fire proof paint specialists in Australia whose services are available to you. Which one you should contact, depends on the substrate – most of them can help you with coating steel, but wood and concrete require different expertise. We at Coating.com.au are happy to help you find the right specialist for your building, and provide you with a competitive proposal for the product and job. Make use of our 100% free quote service by clicking the “Request a quote” button at the bottom of this article. Our experts are happy to help. We also provide lists of specialist fire coatings applicators in Sydney and Melbourne.

Here is a selection of Australian specialists in fire rated paints. These companies often use internationally recognised products from manufacturers such as AkzoNobel, Dulux, Sika, Sherwin Williams and PPG.

Fireproofing paint companyAddressSpecialisation
CAP Coatings Australia PO Box 277, Ettalong Beach, NSW 2257 Real estate and consumer fire rated paint applications
OL’ Painting Suite 284, 4 Young St, Neutral Bay NSW 2089Industrial and commercial fire resistant coating applications
Pro Plaster N Pain 54 Abbotsford Parade, Abotsford, Sydney, New South Wales 2046, Australia Commercial and consumer fire resistant coating applications
Mike Bailey Paint Services 17 Toolamba Road, Mooroopna VIC 3629 Commercial and consumer fire resistant coating applications
Action Alliance 50 Cyanamid SDt, Laverton NOrth VIC 3026Industrial, commercial, civil, mining and offshore fire resistant paint applications
PFS Group Unit 2 401 Francis Street Brooklyn VIC 3025Industrial and consumer fire paint applications

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11 replies
    • Ayold
      Ayold says:

      Dear Taikan,

      Thank you for your request for fire resistant coating. We will send you an email to help you further.

      Best regards,
      Jasmin – Coating.com.au

  1. Todd Boakes
    Todd Boakes says:

    Hello we are looking to coat the underside of our wooden flooring in our home.
    Which product do you recommend & does it need to be professionally applied

    • Ayold
      Ayold says:

      Hi Tod,

      Thank you for your question regarding coating for your woorden flooring, we will send you some recommendations by e-mail.

      Best regards,

      Marieke – Coating.com.au

  2. Nola Johnson
    Nola Johnson says:

    Hi there, we are looking at coating our brushwood fence (about 16 years old) to make it fire proof. Would your paint be suitable?
    With thanks, Nola

    • Ayold
      Ayold says:

      Hi Nola,

      Thank you for your question about fire proof paint for fences. We will send you more information on the possibilities by email.

      Best regards,
      Jasmin – Coating.com.au

  3. Sandy Jenkins
    Sandy Jenkins says:

    I’m renovating an old wooden mantle which surrounds a cast iron woodheater. Can you recommend a suitable paint please.

    • Ayold
      Ayold says:

      Dear Sandy,

      Thank you for your question about fire resistant coating. We will shortly send you an email to inform you about the possibilities.

      Best regards,
      Jasmin – Coating.com.au

  4. Nick Xipakis
    Nick Xipakis says:

    HI there.

    Is it possible to paint an old ornate ceiling with one of your paints to achieve a 1 hour fire rating?
    I’m setting up a cafe and the certifier has requested to instal fire check gyprock to achieve this. However we want to save the ceiling as it would be a nice feature .

    Thanking you in advance .

    • Ayold
      Ayold says:

      Hi Nick,

      Thank you for your question about applying fireproof paint to a ceiling. You will shortly receive an email from us containing more information on the options.

      Best regards,
      Jasmin – Coating.com.au


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