AHR Expo: Firestops That Also Fight Water Intrusion

Jan. 15, 2019

In multi-floor buildings, code requires firestop systems that can prevent the spread of fire, smoke and gases between floors. This device for concrete buildings meets code requirements and also shields lower floors from water intrusion.

A firestop system that can keep fire, smoke and gases from spreading between floors in your building is required by code. A new device spotted by the BUILDINGS team at AHR 2019 meets the code requirements, but also delivers an extra layer of protection – stopping water from flowing to lower floors.

(Read the transcript at the bottom of this article.)

“If you have a water event – say, a toilet overflows or a fire sprinkler gets knocked off – and you have water on the floor, you don’t want water to be able to get through one floor to another and cause property damage, mold or contamination,” explains Chip O’Neil, vice president of business development for Reliance Worldwide Corporation, which produces the HOLDRITE HydroFlame firestop. “This makes each level of the building watertight no matter what is penetrating the floors.”

(Photo: Chip ONeil chats with Christoph Trappe about the HOLDRITE HydroFlame firestop product featured at AHR Expo from Reliance Worldwide Corporation.)

Designed for concrete buildings, the UL-listed HydroFlame firestop is added to the floors between stories when concrete is poured just like any other firestop system. It provides a pathway for plumbing pipes, electrical conduits and other utilities.

[Related: Ways Your Fire Safety System Could Be Falling Short]

An expanding material inside closes off the gaps between the piping and the sleeve when fire reaches it, stopping the fire from spreading through for up to three hours. A separate seal in the mid-body of the device does double duty by stopping smoke and preventing water from flowing through.

Read the transcript:

Hello, I’m Chip O’Neil, vice president of Business Development for Reliance Worldwide. We’re gonna take a look at one of the product categories in our group of products today. One of them is called HOLDRITE HydroFlame. So, what we’re gonna pinpoint is what’s so unique and so important about this type of device.

This is a UL-listed firestop device. What it does is it gets poured into a concrete floor for multi-story concrete construction and it provides a pathway for utilities to go through, whether it be plumbing pipes, electrical conduits, whatever it might be. And it also provides the fire stopping that is code required and a life safety component. So, this is intumescent firestop material that’s build into this device.

When a fire hits this, it expands that material and closes off any gaps that are between the pipe and the sleeve to stop fire for three hours.

Also, and what’s really important besides the life safety feature of it that’s so important with every building, what’s important to building owners here is this mid-body seal, which actually not only stops smoke, which is required by the code, but also stops the penetration of any water that can get through from one level of the building to another.

So, if you would imagine that this is the concrete floor, this of course is off during the installation, the pipe is coming through here. If you have a water event, say a toilet overflows or a fire sprinkler gets knocked off and you have water that’s getting on the floor, you don’t want that water to be able to get through from one floor to the other and cause property damage, mold, contamination in the medical environment for instance. And so, this makes each level of the building water tight, no matter what it is that’s penetrating the floors.

So, it really provides peace of mind, not only for the installing contractor, but for the building owner for the life of the building.

These products are telescoping in height. They have the ASHRAE-approved safety hole covers on there, all the things that are very important to the installing contractor. But the fact that they are UL listed devices for firestop, life safety, water protection is really important to building owners for the long term.

For any more information on this, please go to and take a look at HOLDRITE HydroFlame.


HOLDRITE HydroFlame is a UL-listed water, smoke and firestop device for concrete buildings. The sleeves are installed in the floors between stories and provide a pathway for plumbing pipes, electrical conduits and other utilities.

[Read also: Top 5 Envelope Failures and Water Leaking Solutions]

Meets code requirements for firestops with an expanding material that closes off gaps between piping and the sleeve when it gets hot, stopping fires for up to three hours. A mid-body seal stops smoke, as required by code, and also prevents water penetration from affecting floors below.

More AHR Expo Coverage:

About the Author

Janelle Penny | Editor-in-Chief at BUILDINGS

Janelle Penny has more than a decade of experience in journalism, with a special emphasis on covering facilities management. She aims to deliver practical, actionable content for facilities professionals.

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