Rainscreen Manufacturer Warns Clients of Fire Test Flaws

A County Durham manufacturer has issued a warning to its clients about what it regards as the serious limitations of fire testing on rainscreen systems.

Phillip Atkinson, Managing Director of BTS Facades & Fabrications how the company has started  several conversations with fellow industry professionals regarding the BS 8414 standard for fire testing on rainscreen systems. With their assistance, BTS’ Technical Facade Director, Matt Kenney, has prepared a statement to be issued to clients who are enquiring about BS 8414 fire tested rainscreen systems.

Phillip comments: “We feel it’s our responsibility to educate our clients on the potential pit falls of the BS 8414-approved rainscreen systems and to stand out from other rainscreen manufacturers by making sure all clients are fully informed about what they’re receiving.

“We chose to update our standard details some six months ago, so now they all state that BTS only recommends non-combustible materials in through wall build ups, which is in line with our professional indemnity insurance. In addition, we recommend a project-specific BS 8414 test is done on a protype of the actual build-up.

“We see the misinterpretation of the BS 8414 test in relation to generic systems becoming a big issue in the near future.

“Coupled with the recently revised BS 9414 standard, we foresee numerous project-specific tests being undertaken retrospectively by clients that assumed a ‘manufacturer system test’ ticked all the boxes to gain approval. These are several reasons why we believe in sharing our view of what a BS 8414 manufacturer system test actually covers, and why it is important for those details to be known.”

BTS Facades & Fabrications’ letter to the company’s clients is below.

 

 

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