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Which is Better: A Fire Barrier vs. Firewall


When it comes to passive fire protection, there are many different systems. Although they all work to prevent the spread of a fire, they have characteristics that make them unique. For your business, you need to know which option is required, a fire barrier vs firewall. Keep in mind when you select a system from a reputable company, you will have tremendous support in choosing the appropriate solution based on your specific needs.

Fire Barrier Vs. Firewall

In simple terms, a fire-resistant barrier prevents a fire from spreading from one compartment to another for a prescribed amount of time. A fire barrier can also be constructed as a mechanical enclosure so if you have a fire rated duct installed, depending on the type and rating, it would provide two to four hours of fire protection.

A firewall is just like it sounds, an actual wall designed to prevent the spread of fire. These walls separate buildings or subdivide a building, to prevent the spread of fire and having a fire resistance rating and structural stability that remains even if complete collapse of the structure occurs on either side of a firewall.

A fire barrier can be quite small or large, again, depending on the application. Because of their flexibility, top-of-the-line barriers can be uninstalled, moved, and reinstalled. A fire-resistant duct can also be part of exhaust systems in restaurant kitchens to stop grease from dripping or building up and thereby, creating a serious risk for a fire.

Unlike fire barriers used as interior fire separations, firewalls are exterior walls or internal occupancy separations that run continuously from the base of a building to the roof. If a fire breaks out, causing the structure of one side of the firewall to collapse, these walls remain standing and retain their fire rating. As with barriers, there are different resistance times but usually, firewalls offer between three and four hours of fire protection.

Fire barriers serve as interior walls or partitions. Sometimes, they are visible and other times, concealed within spaces. As a type of subdivided system, in the event of a fire, barriers restrict the initial flow of flame and heat within their designated areas. As a result, people have time to escape. Also, this prevents the fire from spreading quickly, giving first responders the opportunity to knock the fire down before it causes significant damage.

Regardless of which option you require, it is essential to follow all applicable building code requirements.

Achieve Full Protection

As you can see, between fire barriers and firewalls, you have protection both inside and outside. DuraSystems offers the best passive fire protection systems on the market. You can achieve full protection by contacting us today.