Examples of Passive Fire Protection and how they work

Passive fire protection is becoming an increasingly important part of minimising the risks of fire to a building and its occupants.

As opposed to active fire protection, which refers to more products and measures such as fire extinguishers and smoke alarms that detect and stop the fire, a passive fire protection system aims to contain the fire and prevent it from spreading further.

When correctly installed and used properly, a passive fire protection system is a vital part of a building’s fire safety strategy. Here are just a few examples of passive fire protection.

Intumescent coating

A protective steel covering, the intumescent coating can be applied to a steel structure via paint or a thin layer of film. Intumescent coating contains chemicals that expand when exposed to higher temperatures, forming a protective layer that increases the amount of time the steel can withstand higher temperatures. 

Fire doors

Fire doors offer a clear means of escape in the event of a fire, but it is also an important part of containing a fire. Fire doors can be reinforced with intumescent coating and cold smoke seals, which can prevent smoke from passing through and can help stop the fire from spreading.


The aim of compartmentation is to contain the fire to a specific part of the building, giving its occupants a clear means of escape. Fire doors are an important part of compartmentation, but it can also take other forms, such as barriers and partitions made of fire-resistant material that can help stop the fire from spreading.

Fire curtains

Similar to fire doors, fire curtains aim to stop the fire from spreading. These curtains are made from fire-resistant materials, making them a less obtrusive and more cost-effective alternative to bulkier fire doors.

Passive fire protection is an integral part of any building. In order to successfully pass a fire safety audit, a building must include multiple passive fire protection systems as part of a fire safety strategy.

Passive Fire Installations Limited has more than a decade of experience in designing and installing passive fire protection systems in the Auckland area. If you’re interested in a passive fire protection system and want to learn more, get in touch with us today.