A fire rating classification is a system that evaluates a product or building element’s resistance to fire. For a product to be used in a construction project that complies with building regulations, it must pass “British Standard” tests regarding fire resistance and protection. Put simply, it is a classification or seal of approval that provides users with a guarantee that the product they choose is fit for purpose, and most importantly, safe for that application.
Fire rating is achieved through a series of product tests and while numerous classification systems exist, the most widely recognised is EN 13501-1: Fire Classification of Construction Products and Building Elements. This classification is a test procedure that examines the burning behaviour of a given building product, with focuses mainly on the product’s combustibility, heat levels, flame spread and smoke release. The BS EN 13501-1 rating system includes 7 tiers of classification, ranging from A1, which signifies the highest-performing, to F, which signifies the worst-performing.