TGB 107: Not all Spray-on Acoustic Treatments are created equal.

by | Oct 6, 2020

Over the last number of years, spray-applied acoustic treatments have become a popular method of addressing acoustic issues in open-plan and cellular offices.

This has been prompted by a move away from traditional forms of acoustic treatment, such as tile and grid ceilings, towards exposed soffits.

SonaSpray K-13 has proved a cost-effective method of delivering the required acoustic performance while enhancing/reducing project installation times. However, not all spray-on acoustic treatments are created equal.

Spray on Acoustic treatment fire performance

In particular, fire performance ratings which are being claimed by supposed alternative products need to be examined. Investigations concerning the formulation of these products have revealed that they may not be capable of providing the fire performance claimed. 

For cellulose-based materials to achieve the necessary fire performance criteria, a combination of additives must be included in the formulation of the dry fibres. 

Cellulose Fire Treatment options: Distinctions 

Cellulose products used for blow-in thermal applications typically will use Magnesium Sulphate as a key part of its fire strategy.

All very acceptable for a material which is not expected to be exposed to direct flame as it will usually be enclosed in a cavity.

Investigations have uncovered that such formulations are more likely to result in a B-s2-d0 and only achieve a BS Class 1 at best. The net effect is that such formulation is prone to continue to smoulder (the fire does not self-extinguish on its own) thus achieves this lesser fire performance.

Sonaspray has the data

Sonaspray K-13 has been tested in the Exova Warringtonfire test labourites as per EN 13501-1:2007+A1: 2009 and BS 476:Part 6:1989+A1:2009 & BS 476:Part 7: 1997, and has been rated as B-s1, d0 and Class O. In the case of any queries we are more than happy to provide fully detailed copied of either or both reports.  

So a word to the wise, because it says something on a sales brochure or a datasheet, don’t take it for granted

Spray-on acoustic treatment must not only achieve the specified acoustic performance but must comply with fire rating requirements. 

Sonaspray K-13/FC is one such system that meets all of the various demands to satisfy acoustic, fire and insurance obligations. 

Be Careful!

Others may not be as capable of this despite their written claims. So, it’s up to all construction professionals to make sure the products they choose are what they say they are.

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