In the event of a fire, a fire door works in order to slow the spread of the flames and the smoke throughout the building so that the people within can escape safely.
Fire doors are typically used in commercial locations that require these stronger, fire-resistant doors to meet building codes.
These doors have a fire-resistance rating that is given by the building and fire code inspectors to determine the length of time the doorway will hold up at a flame.
Fire door conditions are dependent on the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and are based around the time that the doors can resist the spread of flame.
As an example, a door using a 90-minute score is anticipated to withstand the fires and the smoke to get 90 minutes. Most doorways ‘ score also takes under account the score of their surrounding walls; in actuality, the wall evaluation is absorbed to the doorway evaluation, typically by about 75 percent.
This usually means that a wall that has a 2-hour rating will usually have doors with 90-minute ratings. Rating requirements for particular locations are set by the building codes or the local fire marshals.
All fire doors must be clearly labeled that all of the requirements have been met by a certified testing agency, and that they must also show what their rating is. For the wooden fire doors, there are specific requirements that must be included to pass certification.
For example, the door must have a solid wood core, and there should be no more than a 3/4-inch clearance between the bottom of the door and the floor.
Also, there should be no holes greater than 1-inch in diameter drilled in the door, and the hardware preps must be done by the manufacturer to ensure the certification. The frame must consist of steel and it should also be prepped by the manufacturer beforehand.
Hardware is another factor that is taken into consideration in certification. Fire doors also must be able to close and latch on their own; if a fire occurs, they require no manual intervention to close and to latch.
The doors should also never be propped open, unless it is by a magnetic hold that is attached to the fire alarm so it is released if the alarm goes off. If locks are used, then they must be fail-safe to ensure that the door is automatically unlocked in case of a flame .
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