Fire Door Inspection Guide

Fire door inspections are a critical component of building safety. When working properly, they help prevent the spread of fire and smoke, allowing occupants more time to evacuate safely. With regular inspections, you can maintain compliance, ensure the integrity of your fire doors and help minimize property damage in the event of a fire emergency.

Continue reading to discover answers to some of the most common questions individuals have about fire door inspections, including basic requirements and all that is involved in an assessment.

How Often Should Fire Doors Be Inspected?

Fire doors should be inspected every year, per National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards. The mandate includes an annual fire door inspection and a drop test to ensure your fire doors function as intended.

What Are the Basic Fire Door Inspection Requirements?

NFPA 80 includes the requirements for fire door installations, inspections and maintenance. Fire door inspection requirements include a visual check and testing to ensure the fire door is not damaged and that it functions as designed. The NFPA also requires an assessment of fire door hardware and materials to ensure they work and can withstand high temperatures and pressures of fire.

The minimum fire rating required for fire doors depends on the intended use of the door and the location of the building. For example, fire doors in hospitals and health care facilities might have a higher fire rating than doors in commercial buildings.

What Happens During the NFPA 80 Evaluation?

During an inspection, professionals can verify that your fire door meets NFPA 80 compliance with the following services:

  • Visual inspection requirements: Fire doors must be inspected for signs of physical damage to the door, frame and hardware. The door must close completely and latch properly. It must also be clear of obstructions that might prevent it from closing.
  • Testing operational components: Fire door self-closing devices should also be inspected to confirm they function properly. Professionals will assess your door’s ability to securely latch when closed, as well as the door’s alignment, to ensure it stays within the frame and seals properly.
  • Hardware and materials assessment: NFPA 80 requires that fire doors are equipped with specific hardware, including self-closing devices, fire-rated hinges and smoke seals, that can withstand fire. Professionals can also inspect your fire door’s seals and gaskets to ensure they are in good condition and properly allow the door to seal in case of a fire. 
  • Clearance: Your fire door must be installed with a specific amount of clearance, and professionals will verify this during an inspection. For example, there should be a minimum of 1/8 inch between the door and frame to ensure it can seal and function in the event of a fire.

Why Is NFPA Testing Important?

NFPA testing is crucial, ensuring fire doors function properly to safeguard buildings and protect lives. Consequences of non-compliance can include injuries, civil liabilities and fines. Regular NFPA testing and inspections can promote the following:

  • Safer environment: NFPA testing helps maintain the integrity of fire doors, which are crucial in containing fire and smoke, allowing for the safe evacuation of occupants.  
  • Reduces risk of property damage: Properly functioning fire doors can isolate fire and smoke in one area, which can reduce the spread of fire to other parts of your building and reduce costly damages.
  • Mitigate risks: Regular testing can identify issues or damages early, allowing for timely repairs and maintenance. A proactive approach can reduce the risk of system failures during a fire emergency. 
  • Meet insurance requirements: Most insurance companies require buildings to meet NFPA standards when assessing claims. NFPA testing helps demonstrate compliance, potentially reducing insurance premiums.

Regular fire door testing and inspections can provide peace of mind, ensuring all measures are in place to enhance a building’s fire safety.

Who Performs Annual Fire Door Inspections?

Annual fire door inspections are carried out by qualified individuals like fire door inspectors, fire safety professionals or certified technicians who are educated and trained in fire door systems. Building owners or facility managers often hire qualified professionals to conduct routine inspections and fulfill fire door maintenance requirements. These inspections help them meet compliance and enhance fire safety measures within the building.

How Do You Keep Fire Doors Operational Year-Round?

Like with other fire protection equipment, a small amount of prevention and maintenance for your fire doors will go a long way. Regular maintenance can ensure your fire doors and components properly function throughout the year, giving occupants a better chance of smooth evacuation. A fire door inspection checklist can include these points:

  • Clear the doorway: Ensure all fire doors are clear of debris, stock and anything that could obstruct the door and prevent an easy exit.
  • Look for visible labels: All fire doors must have visible labels that are legible, indicating the next date of inspection. 
  • Check exit signs: Ensure all fire door exit signs are brightly lit and not blocked by anything.
  • Clean and lubricate hinges: Make sure your fire door’s hinges are free of compacted dirt and dust. Clean the hinges monthly to prevent buildup. You should also lubricate the hinges regularly to ensure doors open easily. 
  • Inspect hardware and frames: Check your door frames, latches, hinges and other hardware and accessories to ensure they are fully aligned, working, secure and show no visible signs of damage. Do not allow additional hardware or accessories to be modified on a fire door, as this can void the designation of the door and become a costly code violation.
  • Ensure fire doors close fully: Test your fire doors occasionally to ensure the self-closing device is working and the door closes completely from the full-open position.
  • Call professionals for prompt repairs: If you notice any signs of damage or faultiness in your fire door, call professionals promptly. They can conduct fire maintenance requirements, repairing the door to ensure it functions correctly. 

How Do You Choose a Fire Door Safety Company?

When partnering with professionals to inspect your fire door, choose a company like Alliance Environmental Group. We offer the following:

  • Certification: With over 26 years of experience, our team is full of tenured, certified experts. We are qualified in fire door inspections and repairs, replacements, recertification and relabeling, as well as many other fire life safety services to help you foster a safer environment.
  • Quality: Alliance Environmental Group maintains an extensive quality control program, delivering the best in customer service.
  • Timeliness: We respond with urgency and efficiency, minimizing downtime and interruptions to businesses. We provide speedy consultations, cost estimates, notifications and containment.
  • Affordable: Our prices remain competitive, reasonable and affordable, helping businesses of all sizes achieve compliance.

Partner With Alliance Environmental for Fire Door Services

Regular fire door maintenance, inspections and repairs can help you meet compliance, protect occupants and safeguard your building in fire emergencies. When conducting regular maintenance and inspections, consider partnering with Alliance Environmental.

While fire door regulations can be complex and time-consuming to follow, we provide expertise and prompt services to save you time so you can focus on other aspects of managing your building. Our comprehensive fire door services can ensure they are up to code and functioning properly.

Contact us for more information and learn how we can assist with your fire door needs.

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