Building and Facilities News is proud to announce that Lubrizol has been selected as our Specialty Chemicals Company of the Month.
Established in Ohio in 1928, Lubrizol has nearly 100 years of history behind the manufacture of its market-leading complex, specialty chemicals. Active in numerous countries around the world, Lubrizol supplies CPVC compounds for the manufacture of fire safety systems.
As a world leader in CPVC resins and compounds with proven performance, Lubrizol offers the BlazeMaster® brand for fire protection systems, which are the most specified non-metallic fire sprinkler systems in the world. These fire sprinkler systems can certainly be relied on, offering easy installation, inherent corrosion resistance and excellent flame and smoke characteristics.
Whether it is a new construction or a building retrofit, BlazeMaster® fire sprinkler systems are specially engineered for use in all light hazard and residential applications. Thanks to Lubrizol’s nearly 60 years of CPVC experience, BlazeMaster® delivers the security expected from any fire protection system, and its CPVC pipe and fittings satisfy all the standards and code approvals for non-metallic fire sprinkler materials.
“As well as manufacturing the CPVC compound material for BlazeMaster® fire sprinkler systems, we also provide the technical assistance and expertise to support the market,” explained Will Robinson, who is the Regional Market Segment Manager for Fire Protection Systems, EMEA region. “This includes online webinars, CPD courses for architects, and communicating with installers themselves on the necessary steps they need to take.
“Especially in light of the Grenfell tower tragedy in 2017, we speak to local authorities and registered social landlords and discuss the need to refurbish tower blocks – we hope that over 4,000 tower blocks similar to the Grenfell tower will be retrofitted with sprinklers by 2022.”
Indeed, as well as working with fire sprinklers from a sales perspective, Lubrizol is committed to educating the people who need to understand the importance of fire protection systems. “This is one of the key things that sets us apart. There aren’t many other companies that do what we do in the EMEA region. We offer specialist help and advice, and Lubrizol brings a lot of value to the market, acting as a resource in the UK to offer guidance if it’s required.”
The need for this education has never been more pertinent. After the Grenfell tower tragedy, the Government commissioned a report, leading to a legislation change regarding the height of buildings required by law to have sprinklers. From 26th November 2020, this height reduced from 30m to 11m, growing the market for these fire protection systems.
“This was a big watershed moment for the fire sprinkler industry, and a lot of people don’t know as much about sprinklers as they should. In line with the change in legislation, we have a new specification guide called the Orange Book which is due for completion in January 2021. This will be for anyone who needs to know about the regulations, which includes architects and specifiers but also site managers and building managers. A lot of projects that they were involved in before might not have needed sprinklers, but now with the legislation change, a lot more buildings will need them with an estimated 1,600 additional projects a year now in need of sprinklers. This is a huge change for the UK construction industry.”
Of course, Lubrizol is constantly looking at ways it can educate and raise awareness of the need for fire sprinklers and how they work. “We’re always looking at new marketing initiatives – we’re hoping to release a mock-up of a sprinkler head activating in slow motion to show people what happens. A lot of people think that all sprinklers activate simultaneously in the event of a fire, probably due to misleading depictions on the TV or in films. Sprinkler heads act in isolation – if they detect a certain temperature, they will activate, and then if the next one detects it then it will activate as well. So, if you have sprinklers turning on in a ground floor room, they’re not going to simultaneously activate three floors up.
“This education remains part of our whole plan going forward to increase people’s awareness and knowledge. We have all kinds of people come to us asking for guidance, either with a basic understanding of sprinklers or with no knowledge at all, so we’re trying to create material that will reach out to people with varying knowledge bases.”
To continue this education, Lubrizol released a new website in December www.blazemaster.com, featuring numerous resources and educational material on how to specify the sprinklers, and where they can be used. “There is also a weekly blog – there’s all manner of different things in relation to the sprinkler sector as a whole in the UK.
“At the same time as the new website release, we released a new RIBA approved CPD complete with an online option for architects, developers, and anyone else who is interested in sprinklers.”
If you would like to find out more information on Lubrizol and BlazeMaster®, head to the website or get in touch using the details below.