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Flammability guide for the domestic market

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Any filling material, whether foam or non-foam, intended for use in furniture, must meet specified ignition tests. This means any material included for the purpose of filling or stuffing the upholstered parts of the furniture.

Any filling material, whether foam or non-foam, intended for use in furniture, must meet specified ignition tests. This means any material included for the purpose of filling or stuffing the upholstered parts of the furniture. The UK furniture regulations detail the specific ignition tests for all resilient filling materials used within upholstered furniture.

Ignition requirements for foam:
  • Urethane foam must meet Schedule 1 part 1 of the regulations. BS5852 source 5 and an FR polyester cover are specified and a mass loss criteria is introduced.
  • Crumb foam must meet schedule 1 part 11 of the regulations. BS5852 source 2 and an FR polyester cover are specified and changed criteria are introduced. The stock material must derive from Schedule 1 part 1 foam (provable).
  • Latex rubber foam must meet schedule 1 part 111 of the regulations. BS5852 source 2 and an FR polyester cover are specified
Ignition requirements for non-foam:

Non-foam filling must meet tests detailed in Schedule 2 of the regulations. The tests use IS 2 and the specified FR polyester cover, except in the case of pillows.

  • Schedule 2 part I – the non foam filling is tested as a single component
  • Schedule 2 part II – the composite of materials intended for the furniture are tested in plied up form
  • Schedule 2 part III – the composite of materials with primary cover intended for either scatter cushions or pillows is tested in layered up form.
  • Schedule 2 part IV – this test is for composite fillings of mattresses and bed bases. The interior filling of a mattress, divan or bed base is tested in layered up form. The test is based on BS6807 using apparatus specifically designed for bed product ignition tests.
Who bears the responsibility for ensuring compliance?

All persons involved in the supply chain bear the responsibility of this requirement. Foam producers and suppliers, furniture manufacturers, importers, retailers, and re-upholsterers must all provide documentary evidence that the material complies with the regulations. The only exception is non-foam fillings supplied to furniture manufacturers and re-upholsterers need not be fire resistant. This means that the furniture manufacturer and re-upholsterer are responsible for ensuring the material or material composite complies with appropriate requirements.

The regulations allow non-foam filling materials to be tested either as a single filling or plied up in layers as intended in the furniture. So where the filling material is part of a composite the furniture manufacturer must ensure the final material combination satisfies the required ignition test. Where a material is to be used as a single filling the furniture manufacturer needs to specify his fire resistance requirement to the supplier prior to purchase

REMEMBER:

Urethane foams must always be tested separately whether or not they are subsequently combined with other filling materials in the product.

Fire Safety of Furniture and Furnishings in the Home - A Guide to the UK Regulations

Fire Safety of Furniture and Furnishings in the homeThe guide has been produced on behalf of the BFC by FIRA’s flammability specialists who have compiled the guide supported by invaluable input from BFC members (NBF, BCFA, BFM and AMUSF) and other industry experts. The guide covers the flammability requirements for all upholstered domestic product including, sofas, armchairs, beds, mattresses, mattress toppers and some outdoor furniture. The guide provides advice on the requirements for manufacturers of fabrics and foams as well as the manufacturer/retailer of the final product.

This essential guide for all manufacturers, importers and retailers includes clarifications and updates on new technology, an informative Frequently Asked Questions segment and sections on individual products. Also included are summary of the Regulations, current practices and changes in the industry, reasons for misinterpretation of the Regulations and outlines of the responsibilities of different organisations throughout the supply chain.

Download PDF of Fire safety of furniture and furnishings in the home - A Guide to the UK Regulations

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E-mail: info@fira.co.uk

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