Everything you need to know about fire-rated doors
Every high-rise residential, industrial, commercial and institutional building needs to be equipped with at least onefire-rated doorin order to comply with the building and fire codes set out by the provincial government. But what exactly is a fire-rated door, and how is it different than any other door in your building? Keep reading to learn more about fire-rated doors and how to ensure your building is compliant.
What defines a fire-rated door?
A fire-rated door is an interior or exterior fire door along the emergency exit path designed to stop the spread of fire and allow inhabitants to quickly and easily get to safety. Fire-rated doors are defined by the fire resistance rating of their frame, door, and hardware. All fire-rated openings need to be certified compliant with the municipal and provincial fire safety and building codes.
Does every building require a fire-rated door?
Yes. Fire door requirements depend on the number of rooms, the function of the hallway, the number of occupants inside the building, the flow of traffic throughout the building and other requirements set forth by the municipality.
What are some of the ratings for fire doors?
Fire rated openings include fire doors, fire rated frames and fire rated hardware all certified by independent agencies to ensure compliance with codes and standards. Fire rated openings are rated on their ability to stop the spread of fire, which is measured in minutes or hours:
· 20-minute: typically used for an interior suite entry fire door to restrict airflow and stop the spread of smoke.
· 45-minute: can be used in many fire door applications in 1 hour fire rated walls. Typical uses include separations in corridors, electrical closets, garbage rooms, storage units, stair wells and between rooms.
· 90-minute: used in 2 hour rated walls typically in areas where the risk of fire spreading is high, such as stairwells, elevator shafts, furnace rooms, electrical rooms, boiler rooms and commercial kitchens.
· 3-hour: used in large commercial and industrial buildings to section off different areas in the building.
What makes up a fire-rated door
Fire-rated doors comprise a number of important parts including the following:
· A fire rating label or stamp indicating the fire safety rating and the certifying body (usually Warnock – Hersey or Underwriters Laboratory) that has tested the material on the door, the frame and all hardware components.
· The right frame. All parts of the door, including the frame, need to adhere to the fire containment rating. Steel frames are used on doors with a 20-minute rating and higher.
· The right type of door. Both wood and steel hollow metal doors can be used as fire rated doors. There are limits to the amount and type of glass that can be used in a door for a lite.
· Appropriate hardware. Fire doors must be self-closing as well as self-latching and only approved steel ball bearing hinges can be used.
· Pairs of Doors: Fire rated pairs can be complex and require a special hardware. Always check with the experts when configuring fire rated pairs.
For fire-rated doors and hardware in Mississauga or throughout the Greater Toronto area, visit Remac Door & Hardware. Serving contractors and construction professionals for over 35 years, we’re your source for complete door and hardware solutions for projects of any size. Contact us today to find out how we can save you time and money on your next project.