Answering your questions about 3M™ Novec™ 1230 Fire Protection Fluid

At 3M, we’re always asking questions about the world around us — seeking better ways to solve new problems and make life better for all. Let us help answer some of your questions about 3M™ Novec™ 1230 Fire Protection Fluid.

Download the 3M Novec 1230 Fluid FAQs (PDF, 154 KB)

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Performance FAQs

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Safety FAQs

  • Safety Margin Graph

    Yes. 3M™ Novec™ 1230 Fire Protection Fluid currently provides the largest margin of safety of any clean agent. Reviewing the permitted limit for humans and the design concentration gives the best guide to an agent’s safety margin. The NOAEL (No Observed Adverse Effect Level) is the internationally established limit for the various extinguishing agents. The design concentration is the amount of extinguishing agent required to extinguish the fire safely. The margin of safety for humans arises from the relative difference between the design concentration and the specific NOAEL.

    As the chart shows, Novec 1230 fluid offers, by far, the highest human safety margin. It also remains safe in case of future alterations to the free volume of the space (e.g. if integration of additional inventory/equipment reduces air volume and increases design concentration).

  • Systems using Novec 1230 fluid are designed to flood a space with the gas to a design concentration. This design concentration is maintained by ensuring that the space has integrity (no leaks or minimal leaks) to maintain the required concentration for the required hold time, usually 10 minutes as a minimum. According to the 2015 edition of NFPA 2001, paragraph 5.6, “A minimum concentration of 85 percent of the adjusted minimum design concentration shall be held at the highest height of protected content within the hazard for a period of 10 minutes or for a time period sufficient to allow for response by trained personnel.” This requirement also exists in other, similar standards.
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Sustainability FAQs

  • As of October 2016, HFCs including HFC-227ea and HFC-125 are following the path of halon, in being scheduled for global production phasedown under the Montreal Protocol. Although these HFCs are clean agents that do not deplete the ozone layer, they are potent greenhouse gases – more than 3000 times more potent than CO2.

    The European Union’s HFC phasedown started in 2015 under the F-Gas regulation. In 2016 at the 28th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol in Kigali, Rwanda, nearly 200 nations approved the timetable to phasedown high global warming potential (GWP) HFCs. Known as the Kigali Amendment, this agreement clearly defines the international phasedown paths for HFC production and use.

    Because fire suppression systems are often intended to last for 30 years or more, HFCs have become unsustainable clean agents. Novec 1230 fluid provides the fire protection industry with an agent that will stand the test of time based on its safety, performance and environmental properties. Novec 1230 fluid has no ozone depletion potential and a climate impact less than CO2 and it’s not targeted for phasedown or phase-out.

    Learn more about how 3M™ Novec™ 1230 Fire Protection Fluid stacks up against the competition.

  • While no one can accurately predict what the future will bring, 3M is so confident that Novec 1230 fluid will not be affected by any environmental mandates that it offers the 3M™ Blue Sky℠ Warranty.

    Read the Blue Sky Warranty flyer (PDF, 248 KB) for more information.

  • The 3M™ Blue Sky℠ Warranty states, for a period of 20 years after original installation and subject to noted requirements, that 3M™ Novec™ 1230 Fire Protection Fluid, installed in an approved fire suppression system, will not be restricted for use in fire protection due to its Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) or Global Warming Potential (GWP) and is not targeted for phasedown by the Montreal Protocol, nor subject to the European F-Gas Regulation targeting the phasedown of production and import of HFCs into Europe.

    Read the 3M Blue Sky Warranty (PDF, 223 kb) complete terms and conditions.

  • There is no cost for this warranty and it is in effect for 20 years after installation.To apply, an end user who purchased a newly installed system simply registers it on the 3M Novec website within 30 days of system installation.
  • The halon family of fire protection products was widely utilised as the first of the new clean agents. These products were popular because they would extinguish a fire without damaging the contents of the space being protected, such as the early computer server rooms. However, in 1987, halons were regulated by the Montreal Protocol because they contributed to the depletion of the ozone layer. In response to the mandates of the Montreal Protocol, manufacturers developed replacement products for halons known as HFCs, the second generation of clean agents. While none of these products contributed to ozone depletion, they do have other environmental concerns such as high global warming potential (GWP) and the resulting regulatory consequences addressed above.

    Novec 1230 fluid is a third generation clean agent because it was developed to provide high performance and a large margin of safety without harming the environment.

  • Water mist is still water. It is wet and messy, electrically conductive and can require costly clean-up. It can destroy the critical assets that keep businesses running. Because water mist is not a clean agent, it is not covered by NFPA 2001. Instead, it is covered by another standard: NFPA 750 which notes, “The standard does not provide definitive fire performance criteria, nor does it offer specific guidance on how to design a system to control, suppress, or extinguish a fire.”

    FM Global’s Data Sheet 5-32 states: “When it is essential to reduce equipment damage from an incipient fire to minimum possible levels, or to facilitate the return to service, provide an FM Approved clean agent fire extinguishing system with detection to protect the data equipment within the data processing equipment room. This is to supplement the automatic sprinkler or water mist system protecting the facility or raised floor.”

  • The quickest way to find accurate and informative material regarding Novec 1230 fluid is on our Fire Suppression - Novec 1230 Fluid webpage.

Find your fire suppression solution today

Fire suppression systems using Novec 1230 fluid help protect what matters to your business. Our approved system manufacturers can create total flooding, specialty and streaming systems tailored to your project’s needs, from data centres to museum archives, medical centres, power generation and more.

Explore your options, or contact us with your questions about fire suppression systems, regulations or Novec 1230 fluid and our expert team will be happy to assist you.

Important Notice

Regulatory: For regulatory information about this product, contact your 3M representative.

Technical information: The technical information, recommendations and other statements contained in this document are based upon tests or experience that 3M believes are reliable, but the accuracy or completeness of such information is not guaranteed.

Product use: Many factors beyond 3M’s control and uniquely within user’s knowledge and control can affect the use and performance of a 3M product in a particular application. Given the variety of factors that can affect the use and performance of a 3M product, user is solely responsible for evaluating the 3M product and determining whether it is fit for a particular purpose and suitable for user’s method of application.

Warranty, limited remedy, and disclaimer: Unless an additional warranty is specifically stated on the applicable 3M product packaging or product literature, 3M warrants that each 3M product meets the applicable 3M product specification at the time 3M ships the product. 3M MAKES NO OTHER WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, ANY IMPLIED WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF SUITABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR ANY IMPLIED WARRANTY OR CONDITION ARISING OUT OF A COURSE OF DEALING, CUSTOM OR USAGE OF TRADE. If the 3M product does not conform to this warranty, then the sole and exclusive remedy is, at 3M’s option, replacement of the 3M product or refund of the purchase price.

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3M and Novec are trademarks of 3M Company. Blue Sky is a service mark of 3M. Used under licence by 3M subsidiaries and affiliates.