Many building codes require fireproofing protection to structural steel as a safety precaution. In a building fire, structural steel loses strength as the temperature increases.
In order to maintain the structural integrity of the steel frame, several fireproofing measurements are taken:
- Restrictions on the amount of exposed steel set by building codes.
- Encasing structural steel in brick masonry or concrete to delay exposure to high temperatures.
The most common way to provide such protection is by coating or spraying cementitious compounds. It can be applied on steel to provide heat resistance and also can be applied over wood, wall, and other building materials. Building codes dictate the required thickness of the coat being applied.