Fire-resistant fabrics or FR fabrics can be very expensive and replacing them over time can be even more expensive.So, buyers try to use the same fabric for a long time. But by doing so they can really put the wearers’ life at risk as it is the workers’ first line of defense against any deadly attack or injury if they come into contact with fire or extreme heat. Quality of the fabric is the most important factor and comfort and appearance can be of secondary importance.
Like any garment FR fabrics also have a certain lifespan. After the life of the fabric, it is important to consider changing it with a new FR fabric. Although most brands of FR fabrics make the fabric durable and long-lasting maintaining its flame-resistance last for a long time but physical damage like sharp objects can decrease the lifespan and the FR fabric would need repair or replacement. Fabrics should be checked and inspected constantly and any damaged garment should be decided to be repaired or replaced.
Fire-resistant fabrics are important in the industrial sector as they provide defense against fire and flame hazards. The weight and layers of fabric can make a difference in FR fabrics and after continuous washes the fabric gets light compromising its FR properties.Recognizable through visual examination, the following products may reduce the effectiveness of FR workwear and cause it to be replaced or at least be considered for possible repair.
Heavy Stains: sometimes working with chemicals can result with some of them spilling on the clothing and some of the chemicals can be flammable. If these stains cannot be removed it can risk flammability. The smell and odor of chemicals can prove that a flammable substance is present on the clothing. If the chemical is hard to remove then professionals should be hired to handle them so they can use their advanced skills to clean the material and make it stain free as well as risk-free. If the stain is permanent it should be considered to be disposed of as it can be very prone to fire while the worker is on job.
Physically Damaged: If the clothing is ripped or cut open and not functional it means it cannot be repaired and the garment would have to be replaced.
Wrong Sized: If the person wearing the clothing thinks the garment they are wearing is not their size then it should be replaced. If the garment is too tight it can be less fire-resistant as there would be no gap between the fabric and the skin and if the clothing is too loose it can get in the way of movement and cause the person to trip onto something dangerous and risk their life. The clothing should be a perfect fit with open space between the person and the fabric to have airflow as it will provide better fire protection.
Worn out Fabrics: If the fabric has been used for a long time and it has been worn out by washing and wearing it should be replaced at it can also pose a threat. The FR properties would have become weaker than it was originally.
If the garment has apparent harm that could be fixed, it can be an efficient way to decrease costs by being prepared to correctly repair a damaged garment. However, to repair FR clothing efficiently, a few fundamental rules should be pursued:
While repairing FR fabric buttons and zippers and other parts it should be necessary that these newly replaced parts should also be fire-resistant and parts like buttons should have a high melting point so they do not melt in high temperatures. If the parts are not made with same FR properties it can affect the Fire resistance of the fabric. These parts can ignite under flames and cause damage to the person wearing these clothing.
Use thread that is FR inherently for any repair. Using non-FR thread in repairs can jeopardize the garment’s efficiency. Non-Fire Resistant thread can burn rapidly, enabling the sewn region to disintegrate and expose flammable underlay or bare skin that could cause injury to burn.
The fabric that is used to repair the fabric should be the same type of FR as the FR fabric as they can react with each other and reduce the FR property.
How the Fire-resistant fabric garment looks and feels plays a big part in the buying of the garment because of the worker wearing the garment feels that the garment is not fit or comfortable it can disturb their work and may cause them to lack in their duties and affect the productivity of the company.Having completely functional, clean, well-fitting FR clothing allows a safer workplace with employees taking care of their clothing as well as other PPE clothing.
If Fire-resistant fabric garments are repaired and treated right through the life of the fabric can last very long. If the buyer cannot repair and handle the garments with the care it can cause them extra money and risk the life of the person wearing it.
The most important part of keeping the lifespan longer of the Fire-resistant fabric is to regularly check for damaged areas and hiring the right people to repair them. People who are hired to fix these fabrics should know what they are doing as any chance of mistake can affect the whole garment and may even destroy it completely.
The garments should be washed with care as well because some chemicals like bleach can damage the chemicals coating the fabric and make it less fire-resistant. Room temperature water should be used to wash them as hot water makes the fabric weaker. Knowing how to wash your FR fabric can save budget cost on repairs and buying new FR fabrics and this cost-saving can be used in more safety garments to increase the defense and protection of the workers. If the workers are safe they would work in the harsh environment more comfortably and this will improve the productivity for the company that hires them.