Fire Doors have been evolving since the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire in New York during 1911. NFPA-80 (Standard for Fire Doors) gets an update every 3 years and with each edition we see stricter and stricter requirements for Fire Doors. In the 2013 edition, the code calls for all Fire Doors to be inspected yearly by a Certified Person and to maintain records. In future editions of NFPA-80, I think it is safe to say that the qualifications for this “Certified Person” will be defined more narrowly. So for today’s talk I thought it might be interesting to see what can and cannot be done to a Fire Door in the field.
- Only holes 1″ or smaller (like screw holes) can be drilled in the field.
- All fasteners, screws, through bolts must be steel based.
- No cutting of lite kits; nor major modification of the door in the field.
- All hinge shims must be steel. (No paper shims)
- On single doors, 1/8″ clearance around the sides and top of the door. 3/4″ max at the threshold. For pairs, 1/8″ in-between doors.
- Any miscellaneous holes need to be filled with either steel screws or Fire Door caulking.
- For excessive gaps, there is tape made of a graphite compound.
We are already seeing hospitals inspecting Fire Doors annually as part of the requirement to qualify for Medicare payments.
If you run upon a situation where you are unsure if you can reuse a door or if you need to order a new door, just call us. We will try to help.