While you may recall fire safety as “stop, drop, and roll” from your childhood, fire safety in buildings includes having the right products installed to help prevent the spread of flames and smoke. Investing in proper fire safety products is essential to keeping your building – and the people in it – safe in the event of a fire.
What is a Fire Door and How Does it Work?
Fire doors are doors with a fire resistance rating used to reduce the spread of fire or smoke between areas to allow for safe evacuation. The doors hold back smoke and fire by utilizing intumescent strips that are installed either around the door or around the inside of the frame. When the strips reach a certain heat temperature, they expand to seal the gap between the door and the frame, preventing smoke from traveling throughout your structure. Fire doors must adhere to the NFPA’s door regulations during manufacturing.
What is a Fire Resistance Rating?
A fire resistance rating indicates the duration for which the door can withstand a fire resistance test before failing. There are currently five levels of fire resistance ratings. All ratings are granted by a third-party testing agency and are labeled on the product itself.
5 Levels of Fire Resistance Ratings
- 20 Minutes
- ¾ Hour
- 1 Hour
- 1 ½ Hours
- 3 Hours
Fire Door Regulations Labels
A fire door must have a label attached to the product that was granted by a third-party testing agency. The label cannot be painted over or removed. The door must also be self-closing and positive latching. The fire rating of the wall dictates the fire rating of the door. The NFPA website has listed all fire door regulations.
5 Types of Fire Doors
Temperature Rise Doors
In certain situations, there may be a requirement for a door to not distribute the heat from one side to the other. This regulation is either 250 degrees Fahrenheit, 450 degrees, or 650 degrees. The temperature indicates the maximum rise above ambient temperature on the non-exposed side of the door during a fire. This regulation is measured after the first 30 minutes of fire exposure.
The swinging door must be self-latching and self-closing. The swinging door has a single-acting hinge that only allows it to open to one side. The swinging door is the most-used door since it caters to a wide variety of buildings.
The sliding door is designed for buildings that have an increased risk of fire, whether it’s because of the activities taking place inside the building or a large stock of materials. These doors self-close using a counterweight system or an engine.
The shutter doors are used in spaces that have large gaps but overall reduced free space. These doors were specifically designed for these types of floorplans, ensuring they would be able to provide the proper level of safety.
The guillotine doors are used in very specific spaces, including luggage sorting halls or the halls of a laboratory. They are kept open almost all the time and only close when they receive a signal from the fire detecting system.
What Are Fire Doors Made Out Of?
Fire doors are made from several different materials, including steel and glazed glass. Steel doors are the most versatile and can be found in most commercial buildings. Glazed fire doors provide visibility without the risk of opening the door for people to see if there is an escape route. However, glazed doors have additional fire and safety requirements.
Why Lloyd Industries Fire Doors
Lloyd Industries provides products that are top-of-the-line while maintaining excellent customer service and quality. Geared towards commercial real estate, the company has kept itself relevant in the industry and continue to produce fire-safety-related products providing you with peace of mind. Lloyd Industries prides itself on keeping its products up to code and offering a wide variety of options.
If you plan to install on your own, Lloyd Industries provides downloadable installation guides that will walk you through each step. It also understands that many people aren’t comfortable doing the installation themselves and has local reps that can assess your needs and complete the installation for you.
Ordering Products from Lloyd Industries
Lloyd Industries has continued to be a top contender for all fire-related products, including doors, dampers, and other HVAC products. Each product is made to order, ensuring it will be the perfect fit for your structure!
Lloyd Industries Warranty
Lloyd Industries warranty covers replacement materials and repairs when applicable.
“Products manufactured by Lloyd Industries are warranted to be free from defects in material and workmanship for 12 months after being installed or placed in service, but in no instance shall the period of warranty be longer than 18 months from the date of original shipment by Lloyd Industries.”
If defects are found, Lloyd Industries requires the defective items to be returned so the problem can be assessed to ensure it doesn’t happen again.
How Often Should Fire Doors Be Inspected?
Fire doors should be inspected at least once a year by a valid fire protection company or an IFDIA certified professional that is knowledgeable on all the codes and regulations that need to be met. They will confirm that the doors are working as expected and ensure they are up to code and compliant with the most recent regulations.
If you are unsure about your doors’ last inspection, reach out to a professional to have them take a look and complete an inspection if necessary. Ensuring your doors are up-to-code can prevent disaster in the event of a fire.
As you can see, fire doors are crucial to your building and have been very successful in saving lives. By stopping fire and smoke in its tracks for even a small amount of time, those in the vicinity can find an escape route and get themselves to safety before the fire reaches them. It is imperative to have consistent inspections of your fire doors to ensure they are operational.