Understanding Pass/Fail Criteria For The E119 Fire Test

September 6, 2021   -  

How do we determine that a wall, partition, roof, or floor that you manufacture will be safe when exposed to fire? We rely on the ASTM E119 test method.

This comprehensive test allows us to evaluate the duration for which certain building elements can contain a fire, retain their structural integrity or exhibit both properties during a predetermined test exposure.

To conduct this test, we expose numerous building elements to uniform fire exposure and evaluate the period of resistance before the first critical point of behavior is observed.

ASTM E119 Test


The following critical timed events are recorded during the ASTM E119 test. Pass/fail (endurance time of the assembly) is when the first of these events occurs:

  • The temperature rises to 250 degrees F above the ambient temperature on the average of all unexposed surface thermocouple locations.
  • The temperature rises to 325 degrees F above the ambient temperature on any single unexposed surface thermocouple location.
  • For assemblies where structural steel members are utilized, the maximum temperature on a structural steel member exceeds 1,100 degrees F.
  • Any flaming is observed on the unexposed surface of the test specimen.
  • Smoke and/or gas emissions are hot enough to ignite cotton waste material applied on the specimen surface.
  • Failure to sustain the applied load during exposure of load-bearing assemblies. In many cases, the ASTM E119 test requires an additional evaluation of the assembly where it is subjected to a hose stream test to establish a fire resistance rating.

For more details about this test (including information about what this test standard does not provide), please contact us at 716-873-9750 Ext. 302 or email@ngctestingservices.com.

We’re well equipped to help you run the ASTM E119 test and will support you every step of the way.


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