Contego Preparation and Application Information

When applying Contego intumescent paint, following the preparation and application guidelines developed over twenty years in business is a must.

If your preparation and application processes are in line with our published guidelines, Contego Intumescent will safely protect your project. We have created a series of six videos to help train your team. This first video explains how to safeguard your applicator, prepare the paint, and the type of equipment we recommend for our intumescent coating.

Contego comes in two thickness formulations:

The High Solids version (HS) has a 70% solids content and can be applied 30 mils wet, drying down to 21 mils. This preparation requires fewer coats to achieve a specified dry film thickness. Although thicker wet film coats can be applied with HS, the finish is essentially just as smooth as our Original version. The Original formula dries to approximately 50 percent of the applied amount. Due to its formulation, when the Original version dries, it is a bit smoother than HS.

The zero VOC content of both formulations has been demonstrated by testing ASTM D 3960-05, “Standard Test Method for Determining Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Content of Paints and Related Coatings.” This makes Contego a safe coating for both the applicator and those who live within the structures protected by Contego.

The difference between HS and Original is that HS has less water and more thixotropy. Otherwise, comparison of the FTIR spectraflouriscopic “signature” of each version show they are chemically identical, so both offer the same class-leading fire protection.

HS is generally used on large projects, especially on structural steel columns and beams. These structures are often not visible when the project is completed, but that aside Contego is generally thinner, lighter, and less expensive than any other intumescent coating available. Plus, applying HS makes the job go faster because it requires less product and spraying. The Original version is usually used when spraying isn’t an option and brush and roll applications are the only choice. Both versions can be top-coated to add color or sheen and to seal the surface from wind and moisture.

Regardless of where these two outstanding products are applied, there is never an issue with the material when application instructions are followed. When we hear from an applicator that they are experiencing a problem with the product, it is almost always determined that it was caused by poor preparation or application.


We hope you find this first video explaining how to safeguard your applicator, prepare the paint, and the type of equipment we recommend informative. Other videos in this series will soon be available that cover related subjects.

Contego International started 20 years ago in a small family restaurant in Indiana and now draws in talent from around the globe. Contego’s intumescent products are sold worldwide and are applied to many types of surfaces, including steel, wood, aluminum, drywall, foam insulation, and concrete. For more information, please explore the rest of our website, request an information kit or contact us.