Reliant® fabrics, because of the uniquely inherent FR properties in the fiber itself, require no addition of FR chemicals or topical coatings at any time during the manufacturing process. The FR chemistry is added to the fiber during the fiber extrusion process. As a result, when spun together with other fibers, Reliant woven and knitted fabrics offer excellent FR performance along with all of its natural comfort, breathability, and softness.
How are Reliant® fabrics different from topically treated FR cotton fabrics?
Reliant fabrics are considered inherently FR. The cellulosic fibers do not require topical additives when combined with the modacrylic fiber in the blend. The addition of Cotton actually increases the blends performance, pushing the LOI (limited oxygen index) from 33 up to 35. Treated FR cotton fabrics undergo a rigorous and sometimes damaging chemical process to impart its flame resistance characteristics. This process can diminish fabric strength, add artificial chemical weight to the fabric, and actually diminish the natural moisture absorption of Cotton. The chemical processing of FR cotton fabrics, to make them flame resistant, causes damage (sometimes severe) to the cotton fiber itself. This robs the fabric of its original strength, natural comfort, and textile performance, and most definitely diminishes wear life as compared to its original state. In comparison Reliant’s softness, breathability, natural comfort, and original performance of the textile remain (no FR topical chemical additives to degrade the cotton).
Can you bleach Reliant Fabrics and will the bleach affect FR Performance?
If bleach is needed, a non-chlorine bleach is recommended to prevent color loss (Clorox®, for example); laboratory testing shows no detrimental effect of either chlorine or non-chlorine bleach on the flame resistant property of Reliant®. The introduction of bleach to topically treated FR cotton fabrics can have an adverse negative effect on the fabrics flame resistance.