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Fireproofing Upholstery: Fire Retardant Spraying Services for Upholstery

Certified BS 5852 fire retardant services for upholstery. We ensure your upholstery is safe and compliant with fire safety regulations and standards.

Specialists in on-site fire retardant spraying across the UK. We are available for free advice, online or by phone.

Understanding Fire Safety Standards for Furniture: A Simple Guide

When you're buying new furniture, it's not just about style and comfort. Safety is a key factor too, especially when it comes to fire resistance. Here's what you need to know about the fire safety standards your furniture should meet:

What are The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988?

  • These are UK regulations that set fire safety standards for domestic furniture.

  • They ensure that materials used in furniture (like foams and covers) are tested for fire resistance.

Testing for Foam Fillings (BS 5852: Part 2):

  • Foams in your sofa cushions must pass fire tests.

  • This includes a rigorous test where a higher intensity flame (like a small crib fire) is used.

  • The goal is to ensure foams don't catch fire easily and don't burn quickly if they do.

Testing for Fabric Covers (BS 5852: Part 1):

  • Fabric covers are tested with a smoldering cigarette and a small flame (like a match).

  • This checks how well the fabric resists igniting and burning from these common fire sources.

Safety Labels:

  • Furniture meeting these standards will have a label saying it conforms to fire safety regulations.

  • This label is your assurance that the furniture has been tested for fire safety.

Why This Matters:

  • These standards help reduce the risk of fire in your home.

  • They ensure that if an accident happens, your furniture won't contribute significantly to the fire.

Can upholstered furniture be treated to meet Crib 5 fire standard?


Although it is possible to treat upholstered covers with fire retardant to achieve the fire resistance required to pass a Crib 5 "fire" test, part of the test requires the covers to be able to withstand wash cycles.


The only method able to withstand the "test" wash cycles and not alter the look or feel of the fabric is back coating. The back coating can only be applied using specialist machines when the fabric is on a roll.

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​In the UK, furniture must be labelled according to the Furniture Fire Safety Regulations (FFSR). This will provide information regarding the fillings used and whether they are combustion-modified (CM) foam. CM foam is foam that has been treated with fire retardants and passed a crib 5 test. Unfortunately, foams and fillings cannot be post-treated to be made fire resistant.

Crib 5 Certification

​In order to issue a Crib 5 test certificate for furniture that meets the requirements of the Regulatory Reform Fire Safety Order (RRFSO), suppliers must keep records of testing that is conducted at regular intervals. Pre-upholstered furniture cannot be issued with a Crib 5 "test" certificate that complies with the RRFSO.

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If your furniture has a fire label stating the foam used is CM type, it may be possible for us to treat and certificate your furniture. To be RRFSO compliant, you must carry out a fire risk assessment. The first stage will be to assess what level of fire hazard your furniture needs to be.

Fire Hazard Categories

The furniture placement in a building needs to be taken into consideration when conducting a fire risk assessment. The hazard category of the premises can be determined by referencing the table below, which indicates what level of fire resistance is required.

Fire Hazard Category

Domestic Furniture Fire Rating

If your domestic furniture displays a fire label and contains CM foam, it can be used for low-hazard premises. However, if a risk assessment has assigned your furniture with a medium hazard categorisation, there may be other factors at play. In this case, you should inquire as to what these factors are. In this way there may be options to reduce the risk; one of these might be fire retardant treatment.

Medium Hazard Category

The Medium Hazard category requires furniture to be "Crib 5 Tested and Certified" by the supplier. There are situations where medium category premises may only require Low Hazard category furniture, such as if there is a sprinkler system, fire extinguisher nearby, etc. 

An alternative to this could be to have the covers treated with a fire retardant, and to obtain a certificate of treatment for record keeping. This should be discussed with the individual responsible for fire safety in accordance with the RRFSO.

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What We Do

We provide a fire retardant spraying service which improves the fire resistance of your furniture. We also issue treatment certificates for your records. This improvement could help alleviate issues with low and medium hazard classification to satisfy the RRFSO. 

What We Spray

We treat fabrics covering:

  • Sofas, armchairs and dining chairs

  • Scatter cushions and loose seat covers

  • Bar stools and bench seating

  • Footstalls and ottomans

  • Rugs and wall hangings

  • Headboards, bed frames and drapes

If you are having difficulty understanding your requirements, please contact us for assistance.

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Fireproofing companies, including ours, issue certificates of treatment that do not constitute test results. To obtain test results, an independent, UKAS-accredited testing house must be hired to conduct the necessary tests. However, we carry out our own testing to ensure our processes and products meet the highest standards and comply with the legally required fire safety regulations.

Project Gallery: Expert Fireproofing Services

Discover our specialized fireproofing solutions in this Project Gallery. From sofas to wall hangings, our work exemplifies commitment to safety and regulatory compliance, showcasing our expertise in fire retardant treatments and BS 5852 standards.

Common Questions

Q: Can a sofa without any labels be treated with fire retardant spray?

A: Unfortunately, we cannot treat sofas without labels, as the label provides crucial information about the fire-resistant standard of the internal fillings. Without this information, we cannot guarantee the effectiveness of the fire retardant treatment or compliance with fire safety regulations, such as the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 (FFSR).


Q: I am a furniture supplier and have a piece of furniture covered with an untreated material. Can it be treated to meet the Crib 5 standard as outlined in BS 5852:2006?

A: Yes, it is possible to treat the furniture to meet the Crib 5 standard, as specified in BS 5852:2006, but only if the covers are removable so they can be dry cleaned. This is because the treatment may be affected by regular water-based cleaning methods.


Q: I am renting out a property and need to make the furniture meet the BS 5852 Part 1 standard. Can this be achieved?

A: Yes, it is possible to treat the furniture to meet the BS 5852 Part 1 standard, as specified in BS 5852:2006. However, after the treatment, the furniture will need to be dry cleaned. If the furniture is cleaned using water extraction methods, re-treatment will be necessary to maintain the fire-resistant properties.


Q: How does backcoating compare to spraying with fire retardant in terms of permanence and maintenance?

A: Backcoating is a more permanent solution for suppliers, as it does not typically require a maintenance program. In contrast, spraying with fire retardant involves a maintenance program that necessitates re-treatment approximately every 5 years to ensure continued effectiveness and compliance with fire safety regulations.


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