The Importance of Fire Door Inspections

Fire doors are a crucial component of a building’s fire safety – not just from a passive fire protection standpoint, but also for the life safety protocols for the entire building. Fire doors are similar to other components of passive fire protection in that a properly operating fire door is a critical element of compartmentation –it can be the key in stopping the spread of a deadly fire throughout the rest of the building. An improperly working fire door could lead to a fire spreading through a building much faster than anticipated – resulting in potential loss of life, increased structural and property damage, and difficulty evacuating a facility. Because of its integral role in life safety, NFPA 80 requires that fire doors must be inspected on an annual basis.

During fire door inspections, fire door inspectors evaluate each part of the assembly. For a fire door to operate successfully, all parts of the fire assembly must be in working condition. These parts include the fire door itself, door frame, hinges, locks, bolts, and other necessary door components that will aid in the protection against fires. In addition, the correct type of fire door must be installed according to the particular setting of the building. Horizontal sliding doors, fire shutter doors, swinging doors, overhead rolling fire doors, and vertically sliding doors are just a few of the options to choose from – there may be additional fire door inspection requirements may change based on the type of fire door used. Common issues during a fire door inspection include holes in the fire door, missing labels, failure of latching when closed, missing screws and gaskets, and improper gaps.

Hiring an company with Intertek and FDAI (Fire and Egress Door Assembly Inspection) certified fire door inspectors is essential to ensuring that a facility is in compliance with NFPA 80. The FDAI certification is offered by the Door & Hardware Institute (DHI), and leads to both a FDAI certification as well as an Intertek certification for inspectors. This program ensures that knowledgeable inspectors will be performing fire door inspections – inspectors are required to take a full course load as well as a comprehensive exam in order to become certified.

Gleeson Powers, Inc. offers fire barrier management and life safety solutions, including firestop surveys and installation, fire door inspections, and fire damper inspections. Gleeson Powers employs FDAI and Intertek Certified Fire Door Inspectors.