If you manage a commercial building, you probably know it has fire doors and that fire doors are required by local fire codes. These codes also stipulate how often the doors need to be inspected. Fire doors are essential for the safety of occupants of your building, and they must always be in good working order.
Regular inspections ensure your doors are operational because if problems are found, repairs have to be done promptly. Here's a look at when you should have a fire door inspection and some things the inspector looks for.
When To Have Your Fire Doors Inspected
Codes may require an inspection after a door has been installed and after it's been repaired; it should also be inspected at least once a year. However, you'll want to learn your local codes to make sure you comply with them. Codes are updated occasionally to keep up with the latest knowledge and standards, so the codes may change, and you need to change the frequency of your inspections so you stay in compliance.
Who Performs Fire Door Inspections
A fire door inspection has to be done by an independent professional. You might have your maintenance crew do monthly inspections and mark them in a log, but those are usually not enough to pass fire codes. Instead, you'll need to work with a fire safety inspection company that is certified to inspect fire doors.
The inspector creates records of the inspection and signs them so you'll have proof of the inspection and a record of any problems that are found. You'll need these documents if your building gets a surprise visit from the fire marshal.
What An Inspector Looks For
The inspector uses a checklist of items that are required for fire door safety and makes sure your door complies with all of the items. This includes things like a self-latching door, intact seals, the presence of door labels, no air leaks around the door, no broken parts, no modifications, and that the door operates properly.
If the inspector finds a problem, such as a loose screw, they might note the problem and then make repairs on the spot. While an inspector might make minor repairs, they probably won't make repairs that could take a long time or that need special parts. In that case, you'll probably be given a citation and time frame for when the repairs must be completed. After that time, the inspector will probably return to make sure the repairs have been done properly and that the door can pass the inspection.
Contact a local fire door inspection service to learn more.