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Fire Resistant Building Materials

Fire Resistant Building Materials

A house fire is everyone’s nightmare. While no affordable building material is truly fireproof, well-constructed houses and buildings can help prevent tragedies by using materials that are relatively fire-resistant. Fire-resistant materials can burn slower and allow more time to escape and fight the fire. It can also help reduce fire damage. When you buy, build, or remodel your Madison establishment, we at Certi-Dry invite you to consider your options:

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Concrete does not burn, cannot be set on fire and it does not emit any toxic fumes when affected by fire. It is virtually fireproof. Roughly one-sixth of new homes are built using a concrete block frame, which can limit the damage caused 1) from external fires and 2) by a blaze that starts within the home.  

Another plus is that concrete comes from limestone, one of the most abundant minerals on the planet.

Plaster, Stucco and Gypsum 

Used for centuries for both artistic and structural purposes, modern stucco is made of Portland cement – sand and lime used to serve as an excellent and durable fire-resistant finish material for buildings. Combustibility of a wall assembly depends on more than wall surface finish. If the plaster is on a wood frame wall, then it is considered to be a combustible wall. If it covers a brick wall, less so. Various plaster types and thicknesses will provide certain definable fire resistance ratings, but will not render a wood stud wall as “non-combustible”. 

Gypsum board, or drywall, consists of a layer of the mineral gypsum sandwiched between two sheets of paper. The modern ‘Type X’ gypsum board is specially treated with additives to burn even more slowly. Builders often use multiple layers of gypsum board to increase the fire-resistance rating.


Brick is not only classically beautiful, it is also resistant to fire. Since bricks are made in a fire kiln, they’re already highly resistant to fire. Depending on the construction and thickness of the wall, a brick wall can achieve a 1-hour to 4-hour fire-resistance rating. 

Firebricks” are blocks of other ceramic materials used to line fireplaces, fire boxes and furnaces. Their chemical composition is different from regular masonry bricks and can withstand temperatures up to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit.  


To further protect your home, consider replacing with more fire-resistant windows. For example, dual-paned glass windows double the time it would take for fire to break the windows plus provide energy efficiently.  

Glass blocks are also extremely fire-resistant while still providing light. Note the importance of various types of window framing. Steel framing offers the best fire protection, followed by wood and aluminum. Vinyl is the least effective.

Certi-Dry Restores After Fires

Certi-dry is a restoration company specializing in both water and fire clean up. Usually fighting fires also causes water damage. Contacting a full service restoration team will streamline your process. Certi-dry will remove debris and remaining water, then sterilize the affected areas. Then rebuilding can begin. If you’ve had a fire emergency, contact us  for immediate help.

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