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Posts tagged ‘fire barriers’

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Thatchsayf – spraying season begins

HSG - thatch...

With the albeit brief start of summer, TAS recently kicked off their fire retardant spraying season on a lovely roof in Hinton St George, Somerset.

The new roof which was thatched by local thatcher Andrew Wright, saw a seamless continuation of the existing thatch and formed part of wider refurbishment works and an extension to the whole property.

The entire thatch roof is around 150m² – 16 Thatchers’ sq.

The building and refurbishment works are being carried out by Building Craftsmen (Yeovil) Ltd.

When treating new thatch it may not be apparent how much fire retardant is being applied. However, when existing thatch is treated it becomes quite clear how much fire retardant is actually applied.

Please click on the link below to see examples of the Thatchsayf Spray System being applied to both new and existing thatch.

https://goo.gl/kWjVbB

The airless sprayer used to apply the fire retardant is set at a certain pressure to ensure that not only the surface of the thatch is protected but also the stems of the thatch up to a depth of 75mm or more. This means that even though there will be natural degradation of the thatch itself, there will still be an element of protection for around five years.

The best way to apply the Thatchsayf is with a specialist airless sprayer and at a fairly close distance from the thatch. This allows for greater control and coverage when treating the roof.

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Òran na Mara – Song of the Sea

Òran na Mara

How’s this for a stunning property on the Isle of Harris in the Outer Hebrides?

TAS were very privileged to play a very small part in this incredible project after we were contacted in late 2014 with a view to treating the roof with our Thatchsayf fire retardant. TAS eventually made the long journey to the island in late July once the thatching works had been completed.

The roof is thatched in marram grass, which was sourced locally on Harris and neighbouring islands. Local thatcher, Neil Nicholson from Uist, sourced all the materials and carried out the work. The roof is around 350m² and had turfs laid over the timbers as a base material.

The project has been a fifteen-year labour of love for the owner Paul Honeywell and his family.

Please check the following links for more stunning pictures and information.

http://www.orannamara.com/

https://www.facebook.com/orannamara

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Fire retardants for thatched roofs

Statistically homes with a thatched roof are no more likely to catch fire than those with a conventional tile or slate roof and nationally represents a small percentage of house fires.

However, the results can be devastating and losses can be extremely high as many thatched properties are listed which invariably leads to higher repair costs. Thatch roofs are designed to repel water making them more difficult to extinguish, which can result in increased damage to the entire property.

There are many measures to reduce the risk of fire one of which is treating the roof with a fire retardant spray.

Which retardant?

A water-based solution of fire retardant and intumescent chemicals in a polymer emulsion binder specifically formulated for the protection of thatch roofing. It should be environmentally friendly with no detrimental effect to plants or animals and of course have no adverse reaction to the thatch.

Fire retardants for thatched roofs should not contain any borates or borate-based additives.

Application

Fire retardant sprays should be applied by trained personnel using high-pressure specialist equipment to treat not only the thatch surface but also the thatch stems to ensure a degree of protection for a number of years.

All too often fire retardants are applied to just the outer surface of the roof (often with a garden-type sprayer) only for them to ‘run-off’ due to the liquid repelling nature of the thatch.

The application should be carried out at a certain pressure using a specific tip spraying upwards into the thatch coat work at the angle of the roof ensuring penetration of between 50mm and 75mm.  This will ensure the fire retardant is applied to both the surface and thatch stems.  On an older roof or specific types of thatch, the pressure can be reduced.

When to apply?

There should be no rain for a minimum of four hours prior to applying a fire retardant, ideally the roof needs to have been exposed to direct sunlight for two hours prior to the application.

Due to the high levels of moisture in the air during the winter months the application is normally carried out between the end of March and at the very latest, depending on the long-range forecast, the end of October. After this time, the damp conditions can slow the curing process and leave the roof more vulnerable to the risk of a rain shower during this time.

Why treat a roof?

The latest report from fire investigators, Burgoynes revealed that out of the 103 thatch fires they investigated between December 2008 and July 2013, the most common cause identified was an ejected ember (64), with the next being a chimney fire (11).

http://www.burgoynes.com/fires-thatched-buildings

Which product?

Thatchsayf is a water-based solution containing fire retardant and intumescent chemicals for the protection of thatched roofing.

When applied correctly, Thatchsayf penetrates the stems of the thatch by up to 75mm and will also form a thin protective film on the surface of the thatch stems.

On exposure to heat, Thatchsayf will foam (intumesce) and form a carbonised char, binding the thatch stems together, cutting off the supply of oxygen to the fire and delaying the spread of flame and lowering the radiated heat output.

Thatchsayf is environmentally friendly, can help prevent bacterial and fungal growth and has no detrimental effect on the thatch.

What are the benefits?

  • Reduced insurance premiums
  • Fire penetration delayed for over 30 minutes
  • Can be applied to new or existing thatched roofs
  • Prevents bacterial and fungal growth inc. moss
  • Application is fully certified

A roof treated with Thatchsayf will offer protection from a number of fire risks, including sparks, ejected embers, bonfires, Chinese Lanterns, fireworks and barbecues.

Thatchsayf is tested to BS476: part 3: 2004 and achieved the designation of EXT.S.BA.

Once a roof is treated, the homeowner will be issued with a Certificate of Completion, which can then be issued to Architects, Building Control Officers, Insurance Companies etc. as proof that the thatch has been correctly treated with Thatchsayf. Certification is valid for 5 years before re-application is required.

Many specialist thatch insurance recognise the application of Thatchsayf and will offer a reduction in premiums to those taking a pro-active approach in reducing the risk of fire.

The application of Thatchsayf is undertaken by trained and approved contractors using a high pressure spraying system. This ensures that the correct pressure and coverage is applied to the thatch.

A typical roof should take no more than a day to treat and will dry within 3-4 hours.

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Thatching Advisory Services – New Website

Thatched cliff-top shelter overlooking Seaton beach

Thatching Advisory Services (TAS) recently launched it’s new website. The new site contains the latest information on fire protection as well as comprehensive advice on buying, owning and maintaining thatched properties. There is a new section devoted to new builds and extensions which includes detailed information on roof construction and the latest building regulations.

There is comprehensive information on all our products and systems and a new facility to buy the products via our online shop.

Have a look around the site and feel free to contact us with feedback or if you have any further questions or queries.

www.thatchingadvisoryservices.co.uk

 

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Thatchsayf – Bilbrook Cottage

Bilbrook Cottage - front

Thatching Advisory Services have been out and about recently treating a number of thatched roofs with their fire retardant – Thatchsayf.

Mid-July saw Gary go off to Portadown in Northern Ireland where Master Thatchers (North) Ltd recently completed a full re-thatch of the roof at Bilbrook Cottage.

The cottage, which is one of Portadown’s oldest – dating back to 1642 – was extensively damaged by fire in April 2013.

The cottage also had TAS100 Thatch Fireboards and Thatchbatts® installed prior to the thatching taking place.

The 230m² roof was treated with clear Thatchsayf.

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New Meeting room at Thatchers Cider

Thatching Advisory Services - Thatchers Cider

A new meeting room currently being built at Thatchers Cider has been designed to showcase sustainable construction techniques. With that in mind, the Sandford cider maker asked Somerset master thatchers, Dunbar & Bunce to install a new thatched roof.

Passionate about conservation, both Tom and Nigel – together with their team of highly skilled thatchers, provide an extremely knowledgeable and sympathetic approach to both historic buildings as well as modern applications, such as new houses and extensions.

It is being built with a solid oak framework and natural stone walls. Prior to the actual thatching,  the roof  timbers were covered with Thatch Firewall Membrane, which is one of the fire barriers provided by Thatching Advisory Services.

Martin Thatcher, Managing Director says, “Our new meeting room is being built in the heart of a beautiful part of one of our orchards, in a thicket, overlooking a pond. It is an opportunity for us to show how we embrace nature. Beinyears.”

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Dorset Model – Technical guide to planning requirements for thatched properties.

Dorset Model

Thatch is enjoying a resurgence. Architects, builders and owners increasingly acknowledge the advantage of thatch insulation and aesthetic qualities. Recognising this increasing popularity the eight building control authorities throughout the county of Dorset reviewed current building controls for a thatched roof.

The result of these controls will:

  • Either protect the main structure of the building if a fire occurs.
  • Or provide better protection for the roof members if a fire occurs.
  • Require an acceptance to treat the thatch as sacrificial in a fire.

Companies specialising in thatch roof insurance welcome the “Dorset Model” and recognise that it will reduce the premiums paid.

www.thatchingadvisoryservices.co.uk/Dorset_Model.asp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thatchbatt® The Real Thing!! from Thatching Advisory Services.

---- Imitation Flyer - April 2014.

TAS has recently embarked on a campaign to highlight the authenticity of one its products – Thatchbatts® and has sent out information highlighting the levels of testing and approvals that the product has gone through.

In summary, when specifying a non-combustible insulation product for a thatched roof, this needs to been done on a like for like basis and therefore careful consideration should be given to the specification. Thatchbatts® are a vital component of both the TAS-Thatch Firewall & TAS-Fireboard systems.

For more information about Thatchbatts® or other Thatch Fire Barriers, please contact Thatching Advisory Services on 08455 20 40 60.

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Grant Batchelor at Heritage Skills Hub; Thatching Advisory Services Products; advice available.

Grant Batchelor Master Thatcher recently demonstrated the art of thatching at Heritage Skills Hub Event at the NEC Birmingham.

Grant was one of the Heritage Skills Hub members that promoted traditional building crafts and skills,training and courses this weekend.

Grant also discussed the fire safety products available for thatched properties including  TAS100 Thatch Fireboards, Thatch Firewall membrane and Thatchbatts® – all available from  Thatching Advisory Services.

Visitors also had the chance to ask about our Thatchsayf fire retardant spray as Grant is a fully trained approved sprayer.

Click the link below to find out more about the Heritage Hub skills and what they do.

www.heritageskillshub.org/

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Thatching Advisory Services to Attend National Society of Master Thatchers AGM

 

 

Thatching Advisory Services will be attending

The National Society Of Master Thatchers Annual Conference and AGM.

Entitled ‘For the Good of Thatch’

Friday 14th to Sunday 16th March 2014

 

It is to held at The Norfolk Arms Hotel, Arundel in West Sussex.

The agenda will include discussions on: The Thatch Mark Standard, Chimney safety and Fire barriers and insulation.

 

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