Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Follow US:

AA Affordable Locksmith & Sons

Certified Fire Door Inspection

Fire doors perform a critical life safety function - to give people additional time to safely exit a building at the time of a fire. Proper installation and maintenance of these doors is key to ensuring they comply with code requirements.

Self-closing, self-latching, and labeled are not the only requirements for swinging fire doors. Being able to read fire door labels and understand what is permitted by that label requires significant knowledge and experience.

A Certified International Fire Door Inspector Association (IFDIA) member has the knowledge necessary to inspect and evaluate swinging fire doors for compliance with NFPA 80 and building code requirements.

We use an advanced software package to conduct inspections using tablet PC technology taken from the medical field.

This enables us to conduct our certified inspections faster and more accurately than using paper-based or PDA systems. It also allows us to deliver completed inspections on approved forms giving you and any AHJ confidence in the quality and completeness of the inspection.

If you need additional information about the requirements of NFPA 80, our CFDI can provide presentations on this topic.

Fire Door Inspection

Although NFPA-80 (2007) and NFPA-101 (2009) may not yet have been adopted in our area, they will be soon 2014, and annual inspections of fire door openings and exit door openings will subsequently be required.

We believe it is in everyone's best interest if we start heading down this road, not by requiring "annual" inspections, but rather just an "initial" inspection of the fire door openings.  This initial inspection could/should be included in the specifications as a requirement to obtain the certificate of occupancy.  Let us explain why this is a WIN for everyone.

The building owner wins because he will know that he's getting what he is paying for.  This inspection will ensure that all of the products that make up the fire door openings have been installed properly and they are functioning as they were designed.

The architect wins because he is assured of getting what was specified, properly installed, and functioning as designed.  And because the owner is happy.

The contractor wins indirectly, because this inspection requirement will place more emphasis on the quality of the installation.  Contractors will be incentive to either better train their installers, or subcontract the installation of the doors and hardware to a qualified / trained installer.  And because the door and hardware punch list will be almost non-existent.

The hardware manufacturers win because they invested a great deal of money into the design of their products, and this inspection will ensure that their products have been properly installed, and they are functioning as they were designed.  No call backs or complaints because the products are not working.

The door hardware supplier wins because the punch list is almost non-existent when the doors and hardware are installed by a qualified person.

We can assist your staff with the upcoming JCAHO inspections on your Fire Rated Door Assemblies.

We are a Hawaii based company dedicated to safety of the built world. Founded in 1991, our mission is to provide honest evaluations of issues related to fire doors and fire safety. We look for the most cost effective solutions in all our consultation situations. Hawaii Fire Doors.com puts you first. Because life safety is at stake, all fire safety evaluations, fire door inspections, and consultations are done in accordance with the regulations put forth by the National Fire Protection Association in NFPA-80, NFPA-101, and NFPA-105. Again, cost effectiveness is first in bringing our customers into compliance with these codes. Fire door inspections, field consultation of any kind; if your issue is fire door-related, we can help!

If your issue is fire door-related, we can help!

There are some new building codes and reference standards for the State of California which were adopted January 2009. These codes and standards are retroactive for all buildings which have a Fire Rated door. Some of these building codes become enforceable by the State Fire Marshal on August 1 2009. If you own a commercial or institutional building AND have a fire door, you have to be prepared to pass a rigorous inspection by a qualified individual. These individuals are a third party not associated with the owner, contractor , or manufacturer of the door.
Building Owners are responsible for maintaining the fire rated door in a manner equal to the way it was tested by the listing agency ( the people who certified and set the standard for the way the door is to operate). This is very similar to the testing reports on Fire Sprinklers and annual elevator inspections. These all involve the life and safety of commercial and institutional buildings.
In 1984 San Diego, Los Angeles, and other major metro areas enforced the High Rise standard for fire sprinklers. All high rise buildings over 75 feet were required to have sprinklers. The sad part is that fire is not the main killer of people in these buildings; it is smoke. The fire rated doors form a safety envelope for people to escape. Stairwells and fire walls need to have the fire doors operate correctly. Most people do not know by looking what the difference is between a regular door and a fire door. They look the same but perform completely differently.
CAFDI.org (Certified Association of Fire Door Inspectors) can recommend a qualified inspector. Average cost to the building owner is an average range of $75.00 - $200.00 per opening. Some of the more technical opening assemblies involving electronics, auto operators and fire alarm signaling could be tested for $1,250.00 per opening. Some of these openings require a great deal of background research regarding the age of the building, code compliance at the time of construction, and testing regulations at the time of manufacture for each component on the opening (lock, hinges, door core, frame, panic exit hardware, etc.

New Fire Code Requirements-NFPA 80 Compliance

NFPA 80, Standard for Fire Doors and Other Opening Protectives – 2007 edition, requires documented inspections of fire-rated door assemblies on an annual basis. NFPA 80 requires these inspections to be performed by persons who are knowledgeable of the types of door assemblies being inspected. Swinging doors with builder’s hardware are the most common type of fire door assembly, and are among the most complex due to the myriad of materials and products that are used to create them. These assemblies often provide accessibility, security and life-safety functions in addition to their fire-safety protection, also increasing their complexity. Inspectors must thoroughly understand the dynamics of these assemblies in order to correctly evaluate them in the field.
That's where California Fire Door Inspections comes in. Our fully trained and knowledgeable staff is ready to inspect your door for compliance today. Please call us toll free at 808-943-1425 to schedule your appointment.

Facts about Fire Doors & Inspection Services

Annual Inspections are now required as of January 1st, 2014 - Upon renewing your insurance policy, an annual inspection will be required on all your businesses fire doors. You doors must be in compliance with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

  • Fire Door Purpose - Is to of course, limit fire damage and save lives and property. A fire door, frame and hardware must prevent the spread of flame through the opening for a designated period of time depending on the rating of the actual door. Common time ratings are 3 hrs., 1 1/2 hrs., 3/4 hr., or 20 min.
  • To be certified - The actual fire door, frames and hardware must be tested for flame retardation. The test can be performed by various testing organizations. The most widely recognized testing agencies are Underwriter's Laboratories, Inc. (UL) & Warnock-Hersey (WH).
  • Fire Door Hardware - It is of importance that only UL Labeled finish hardware are furnished on the fire door and frame. Non-labeled hardware defeats the purpose of labeling the door and frame.
  • Label Classification - The determination of the type of certification the door and frame must bare (UL or WH) is made by the authorities having jurisdiction at the job location, i.e. building inspector, etc.

The following table lists the class/rating time/maximum allowable glass area for common type fire doors:

Fire Door Checklist - we recommend going through the list before we do your inspection so a re-inspection is not needed. Per NFPA 80 as a minimum the following items shall be verified:

  • No open holes or breaks exist in surfaces of either the door or the frame
  • Glazing, vision light frames & glazing beads are intact and securely fastened in place, if so equipped
  • The door, frame, hinges, hardware & noncombustible threshold are secured, aligned, and in working order with no visible signs of damage.
  • No parts are missing or broken
  • Door clearances at the door edge of the door frame, on the pull side of the door, do not exceed clearances listed in 4.8.4 (the clearance under the bottom of the door shall be a maximum of 3/4 in) and 6.3.1 (top & edges 1/8 in)
  • The self-closing device is operational, that is, the active door completely closes when operated from the full open position
  • If a coordinator is installed, the inactive leaf closes before active leaf
  • Latching hardware operates and secures the door when it is in the closed position
  • Auxiliary hardware items that interfere or prohibit operation are not installed on the door or frame
  • No field modifications to the door assembly have been performed that void the label
  • Gasket and edge seals, where required, are inspected to verify their presence and integrity