Fire door Testing and certifying
What is fire door ?
Fire door is normally an internal door has compressed fire proof material (rock-wool) between the door’s steel plates. Protects an escape route through a building in a fire situation.Compartmentalizes a fire, to stop flames and smoke spreading from one section of the building to another. Fire door is a key component to the compartmentalization of a building to stop the spread of deadly fire, smoke and toxic fumes.The inspection is to identify and correct issues so fire doors will perform, up to their respective standards, in the event of fire. The tests and corrections are to be documented as proof to the results. Fire doors that operate efficiently help save lives and protect your property when an emergency incident occurs. Damaged or defective fire doors lead to tragic losses and increased legal liability. Fire doors are doors that close automatically during a fire in order to restrict airflow that feeds the fire. Fire Doors are designed and specified to hold off the fire for a rated period of time in accordance with the location and purpose of the wall in which the opening exists. They protect property and people. If there is a fire in one of your buildings, fire doors can minimize damage and most importantly fire doors can slow the progress of the fire giving people more time to escape. National Fire Protection Association [ N.F.P.A ] 80 standards require building owners and managers to have their rolling and sliding fire doors inspected and tested annually , and maintain written documentation of such inspections .
Section 15-2.4.3 reads: “All horizontal or vertical sliding and rolling fire doors shall be inspected and tested annually to check for proper operation and full closure. Resetting of the release mechanism shall be done in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. A written record shall be maintained and be made available to the authority having jurisdiction.” N.F.P.A 80 covers basic requirements for maintenance of fire doors (opening protective). Opening protective include: Horizontally sliding fire doors, Vertically sliding fire door, Rolling steel fire doors, Fire shutters and service counter fire doors Insurance companies often enforce N.F.P.A 80 to reduce their risk and yours. Fire is real and the risk is real.
Properly working fire doors can save lives and property. Reduce your risk by ensuring your doors are properly applied, installed and tested. We have spent countless hours on training regarding proper installation and drop-testing. Over 90% of doors we test that we did not install fail to meet the guidelines. Unfortunately, the door industry has failed to properly train the majority of installers and service technicians. We offer a no charge visit to do a visual inspection, performed by our service rep. Determine if your doors are serviceable and properly installed. Once your doors are brought to a compliant standard, you will be supplied with proper signed documentation through D.A.S.M.A and we can establish an annual drop test program
Fire door inspection
Fire rated doors are an integral part of your building’s overall fire protection system. An operating fire door, just like a properly operating fire damper, is a key component to the compartmentalization of a building to stop the spread of deadly fire, smoke and toxic fumes. If the fire door assembly isn’t working properly, your facility is at risk.
Can existing fire doors be modified for new hardware?
Field modifications are limited by NFPA 80 to jobsite preparation for:
- surface applied hardware;
- function holes for mortise locks;
- holes for labeled viewers;
- protection plates; and
- a maximum 19-mm (¾-in.) wood and composite door undercutting.
Holes drilled in the field are limited to 25-mm (1-in.) diameter, with the exception of cylinder holes that can be any size. For other modifications not specifically addressed by NFPA 80, the listing agency may be contacted through the door/frame manufacturer to request permission to perform a specific modification in the field. Another option would be to transport the existing doors to an approved facility to modify them, attach new labels, and then reinstall the doors. Fire door assemblies can also be inspected and relabeled in the field by the listing agency, if acceptable, but this process can be very costly.
What is positive latching, and is it required for all fire doors?
Hardware on fire door assemblies has to have an active latchbolt to prevent the pressure caused by a fire from pushing the door open and allowing smoke and flames to spread. A springlatch found in a standard lockset or latchset is considered an active latchbolt; some fire door configurations require a specific ‘latch throw’. A deadbolt is not an active latchbolt, because it can be held retracted. An electromagnetic lock does not provide a positive latch, because there is no latching mechanism and the locking is accomplished when the electromagnet bonds to the steel armature. Electric strikes used on fire doors must be fail-secure—that is, when power is cut, the latch is securely captured behind the strike keeper. A fail-safe electric strike could allow the door to become unlatched, so such strikes may not be used on fire doors.
How is fire exit hardware different from panic hardware?
When panic hardware is used on fire doors, it must be fire exit hardware, which bears labels for both panic and fire resistance. A door with fire exit hardware will also have an additional label, indicating it is equipped with fire exit hardware. Fire exit hardware does not incorporate a mechanical dogging feature—the means to hold the latch retracted using a key, thumbturn, or Allen wrench. For fire doors where a ‘push/pull’ condition is desired, fire exit hardware with electric latch retraction may be used, as long as the latch projects automatically upon fire alarm, to secure the door.
Why do fire doors fail?
Like all mechanical products fire doors need periodic inspection and maintenance. While there can be many reasons why doors fail, we see four common situations:
If the fire door is not used on a regular basis, people may not be aware, it is a fire door. Over time with little or no care paid to the door or the opening, the door will not close properly . We have seen in ignorance, the door rails are blocked by brooms, barrels , buckets and other items stored in the doorway preventing the door from closing.
So over time the guide rails may be painted or damaged or people put things in the doorway preventing the door from closing. The fire door opening is a traffic path and therefore the guide rails of the door a subject of related damage. Guide rails get bumped, bent, and knocked out of alignment by forklift, lift truck and carts during the course of a normal day. Please note that it is not possible to visually tell if the damage is severe enough to prevent proper functioning of the door.
Fire door assemblies are utilized to protect door openings and maintain the integrity of the fire barrier. Openings in walls have been traditionally classified by fire protection standards and building codes in accordance with the location and purpose of the wall in which the opening exists. (N.F.P. A – 252-B.2.1) Note that N.F.P. A 80 requires fire door inspections to be done by a qualified person done according to manufacturer’s specifications. As part of our testing we will come out and perform our 17 point inspection and actually drop test your door.
We will provide you with all of the documentation you need to be in compliance with State of TX code. If one of your doors fails the inspection or test, you will be given a quote on the spot for what it will take to bring the door back to proper functioning. Note that this is provided for reference only and should not be used to guide your testing procedures or practice.
Please go to the NFPA – 80 to get the current specification. Once your doors are brought to a compliant standard, you will be supplied with proper signed documentation through D.A.S.M.A and we can establish an annual drop test program. If you truly want to protect your employees and assets by ensuring your fire doors are compliant.
Are annual inspections of fire door assemblies required for all building types?
The 2007 edition of NFPA 80 (and all subsequent editions) require fire door assemblies be inspected each year by someone knowledgeable about the products. A list of inspection criteria is included in NFPA 80, and written documentation of the inspection must be kept for review.Fire door assemblies are required to be in good working order. Conducting an inspection and making the necessary repairs can mitigate the risk and liability of having fire doors that will not function properly in a fire. Inspecting newly installed fire door assemblies a requirement of the 2013 edition of NFPA 80 ensures the building owner has a code-compliant installation to begin with, or allows the deficiencies to be repaired during the warranty period. Our certified fire door inspection team can help you ensure that your fire doors are code compliant and are working properly and provide you inspection certification. We test and certify all types of fire doors like swinging, Vertically sliding, Horizontally sliding and rolling door
- Experience : 20 plus years in the fire door industry
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