Fire doors in any type of commercial facility take tremendous abuse from everyday use. In addition, the constant battering, propping open, slamming and jamming of the fire doors takes a toll on the door and frame integrity itself. The result is the most common deficiency among fire doors, “the failure to close in an actual fire,” states the NFPA. This issue is one of the most severe, as the doors when not properly closed, do not hold back flames or smoke and allow for the fire and smoke to spread more quickly.
The most common reasons fire doors fail are:
1. Lack of maintenance
2. Damage to the door itself or closing mechanism
3. Misaligned tracks
4. Doorway blockage
5. Inoperative latches
6. Faulty seals
7. Improperly adjusted closing devices
Although the code in NFPA 80 requires fire door inspections ANNUALLY, it also requires that fire doors be kept in proper operating condition at all times and any noted defects be repaired or replaced without delay. In order to protect the safety and security of your building occupants and emergency responders, it’s important that you take precautionary measures in between inspections to make sure that your doors operate properly in the event of an actual fire.
CODE UPDATE: CMS Fire and Smoke Door Annual Testing Requirements have changed for 1/1/2018. View new requirements.
Fire Door Maintenance Tips
Prevent door blockage by regularly checking hallways and doorways and clearing out any items that may be blocking the door from completely closing. Doors should not be held open by any non-approved device or stoppers. Operate swinging doors that are normally held open at frequent intervals to test automatic closing devices. Additionally, maintain and make available to AHJ, state and local regulatory agencies detailed records of fire door maintenance and repair. Furthermore, do not paint fusible links or other heat activated devices and remove paint from any moveable parts.
By taking these precautions in between your annual inspections, you can ensure reliable protection or fire door performance for your building’s occupants and emergency personnel.
The life safety specialists at Prevent have you covered for all of your fire barrier component service needs. Call 1-877-392-6074 to discuss your compliance or request a free quote online.