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TEST METHODS: >> Decking Materials Test Method

DECKING MATERIALS TEST METHOD--1990

I. BACKGROUND

To participate in the UFAC Voluntary Action Program, upholstered furniture manufacturers must agree to produce their furniture in accordance with the basic UFAC construction criteria. In order to identify component materials which meet the UFAC requirements, a test method is needed to define acceptable performance in each criterion.

II. SCOPE

This test method is intended to determine the relative resistance to smoldering cigarettes of deck padding materials used under loose cushions. Decking materials which meet the acceptance criteria can be used in upholstered furniture bearing the UFAC label. The materials covered by this test method include but are not limited to:

  1. Polyurethane foam.

  2. Bonded fiber pads.

  3. Treated cotton batting.

  4. Other padding materials intended for use in decking under loose cushions.

III. GENERAL PROCEDURE

Decking material to be tested is cut to size for the test assembly and placed on the plywood assembly base. The UFAC Standard Type II cover fabric is placed on the decking sample, and a wooden retainer is placed on the fabric. Three cigarettes are lighted and placed upon the device and covered with sheeting fabric. The cigarettes are allowed to burn their full lengths unless an obvious ignition occurs. The maximum char is measured from the cigarette and recorded.

IV. DEFINITIONS

  1. IGNITION: Continuous, self-sustaining smoldering combustion of upholstered furniture substrates after exposure to burning cigarettes.

  2. OBVIOUS IGNITION: Pronounced continuous and self-sustaining combustion of the test system. Determination is a matter of operator judgment based upon experience in this type of testing.

  3. SAMPLE: Decking material being tested.

  4. SPECIMEN: Individual piece of sample used in one test assembly.

  5. CHAR: Area of fabric which is destroyed or degraded from face to back, not including the area which is only discolored by smoke.

V. TEST MATERIALS

  1. IGNITION SOURCE: The ignition source for all tests shall be cigarettes without filter tips made from natural tobacco, 85 2 mm (3.3 0.1 in) long and with a packing density of

April 1, 1990

0.27 0.02 g/cm3 (0.16 0.01 oz/in3) and a total weight of 1.1 0.1 g (0.039 0.004 oz).

  1. SHEETING MATERIAL: 100% cotton bed sheeting material, weight 125 28 g/m2 (3.7 0.8 oz/yd2), white in color, and not treated with flame retardants, shall be used to cover test cigarettes. For testing, the fabric is cut into squares 127 x 127 mm (5.0 x 5.0 in).

  2. COVER FABRIC: Cover fabric shall be 100% bright regular rayon, scoured, 20/2, ring spun, basket weave construction, 271 12 g/m2 (8.0 0.5 oz/yd2): UFAC Standard Type II Cover Fabric. This material can be obtained from several commercial sources.

  • From the standard cover fabric cut one piece 343 x 533 mm (13.5 x 21.0 in).

  1. TEST ROOM: The test room shall be draft protected and equipped with a suitable system for exhausting smoke and noxious gases produced during testing.

  2. FIRE EXTINGUISHER: A pressurized water fire extinguisher or other suitable fire safety equipment shall be immediately available in the test room.

  3. WATER BOTTLE AND WATER BUCKET: A water bottle fitted with a spray nozzle shall be provided to extinguish any ignited portions of the test apparatus or components. A water bucket shall be provided for immersing smoldering or burning materials removed from the test apparatus or components.

  4. SCALE: A linear scale graduated in millimeters or tenths of an inch shall be used to measure char length.

  5. OTHER APPARATUS: In addition to the above-enumerated items, straight pins, a knife or scissors, a staple gun and staples, and tongs are required to perform the testing.

VI. GENERAL REQUIREMENTS

1. TEST APPARATUS:

  • The specimen holder shall consist of a plywood base measuring 343 x 533 x 13 mm (13.5 x 21.0 x 0.5 in) and a plywood specimen retainer ring measuring 343 x 533 x 13 mm (13.5 x 21.0 x 0.5 in) in its outside dimensions and with an opening measuring 216 x 406 mm (8.5 x 16 in). See Figure I.

TEST APPARATUS (Click here to view)

2. SAMPLE REQUIREMENTS:

  • For each deck padding material to be tested, cut one specimen 343 x 533 mm (13.5 x 21.0 in) and at least 25.4 mm (1.0 in) in thickness.

  • If sample thickness is less than 25.4 cm (1.0 in), multiple layers shall be used to make up the required specimen thickness.

3. SPECIMEN MOUNTING:

  • Place the 343 x 533 mm (13.5 x 21.0 in) specimen of the decking material on the plywood test apparatus base. The 343 x 533 mm (13.5 x 21.0 in) piece of Standard Type II Cover Fabric is placed face up on the decking material and the plywood specimen retainer ring is placed on the cover fabric. See Figure III.

VII. TEST PROCEDURE

  1. TESTING PRECAUTIONS: THE GASEOUS PRODUCTS OF SMOLDERING COMBUSTION ARE TOXIC. LARGE AMOUNTS OF CARBON MONOXIDE AND OTHER NOXIOUS GASES ARE PRODUCED BY SMOLDERING ORGANIC MATTER. TESTS SHOULD BE CONDUCTED IN A FUME HOOD OR ROOM PROVIDED WITH ADEQUATE MEANS FOR REMOVAL OF TOXIC FUMES.

  2. CONDITIONING: All test specimens, cover fabrics and test materials (including polyurethane, cigarettes and sheeting material) shall be conditioned at a temperature of 21 3 C (70 4 F) and between 50% and 66% relative humidity for at least four hours prior to testing. If the test room conditions do not meet the specifications above for the conditioning room, then testing must be initiated within ten minutes after the specimens are removed from the conditioning room.

DMTM--1990
April 1, 1990

  1. AIR VELOCITY: Zero airflow at the test surface is desirable, indicated by a minimum vertical smoke plume of 152 mm (6.0 in). A draft-preventive enclosure to restrict airflow to convection only is required. See Figure II.

  2. CONDUCTING THE TEST:

  • The loaded specimen holder shall be placed on a table in the draft-preventive enclosure. Light three cigarettes and place them on the test assembly so that they are equally spaced from each other and the retainer ring. Immediately cover each cigarette with a piece of sheeting material, smoothing it over the cigarette to insure intimate contact.

  • Each cigarette is allowed to burn its entire length unless an obvious ignition occurs; otherwise, the test is considered valid when either (1) a cigarette has burned its entire length on each of the three individual test specimens or (2) three cigarettes have self-extinguished on the sample. A self-extinguished cigarette shall be replaced with a freshly lighted cigarette and covered with sheeting until either (1) or (2) above are met. Replacement cigarettes shall be located on an uncharted area of the specimen or on a new test assembly.

  1. TEST OBSERVATIONS:

  • If an obvious ignition of the substrate material occurs on any one of the three specimens, extinguish the smoldering materials, record the results of the test and test three additional specimens.

  • If no ignition occurs, measure and record the maximum char length from the cigarette to the nearest 2 mm (0.1 inch).

VIII. TEST CRITERIA

After removal of sheeting cigarette cover cloth, leave the assembly intact while making char measurements.

  1. If all test specimens have no ignition, or if no char of 38 mm (1.5 in) is obtained in the Type II cover fabric, the test material passes.

  2. If one test specimen has a char equal to or greater than 38 mm (1.5 in), test three additional specimens.

  • If all three additional specimens have a char of less than 38 mm (1.5 in), the material passes.

  • If one additional specimen has a char equal to or greater than 38 mm (1.5 in), record a failure of the test material.

  1. If two or more original test specimens have a char of 38 mm (1.5 in) or more, record a failure of the test material.

IX. REVIEW

This test procedure is subject to review, modification, and improvement. Please submit any suggestions, in writing, to:

UFAC CENTRAL
BOX 2436
HIGH POINT, NC 27261

A list of commercial sources of standard test materials can be obtained from UFAC Central.

DMTM--1990
April 1, 1990


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