The Euroclass system is the leading standard in Europe for fire safety classification of building materials. It’s mandatory to use this standardized system with consistent quality levels. However, there are still often referrals to old standards. This leads to confusion and incorrectness, as they can be based on completely different test methods.
What is the Euroclass system?
The Euroclass system classifies the reaction to fire and by this the behaviour and contribution of construction materials in a fire. The method of SBI-testing is leading here for determining class B to D. A1 and A2 classifications can be given on the basis of a successful non-combustibility test. Certification by the Euroclass system is mandatory.
The Euroclass classifications: what does a certain classification mean?
In the Euroclass system, each classification means that for a product tested within a certain end-use application, there are specific parameters tested and achieved. In the lowest class, F, nothing is tested. Class E only tests with a small flame for a short period of time. D does more testing and also takes into account smoke propagation (s) and the amount of flaming droplets and particles in the first ten minutes of the test (d). At level D, we basically see the first SBI-test, in which a total kit is tested. Classes C and B are even more strict.
In class A2, all of the tests for previous classification levels are done, and there is also a test for the calorific content of the product. A1 only tests the calorific content, which should be of a very low value. Classes A1 and A2 are defined as non-combustible: materials from these classes do not contribute significantly to a fire. Basically, this method is based on a stacked level of testing: with every class there are more strict rules to comply with.
What do the additions s1, s2, s3, d0, d1 and d2 mean?
Whereas the A-F determines the class of a product, there are also two subclasses involved with a classification. The ‘s’ indicates the amount of smoke generated by the product during a fire, and can be s1 (little or no smoke), s2 (visible smoke) or s3 (substantial smoke). The ‘d’ indicates the flaming droplets and particles during the initial ten minutes of the fire and can be d0 (none), d1 (some) or d2 (quite a lot).