With all the standards required of fire doors, there are many ways a fire door can fail to meet NFPA compliance. One of the most common deficiencies found during inspection is poor clearance dimensions around the perimeter of a door in the closed position. The size of the void between the door and the fire door assembly is critical in preventing smoke from spreading beyond the area of origin.
As you know fire doors are held to very high standards, and NFPA 80 has strict requirements on the maximum size clearance around a fire door.
NFPA 80 Clearance Standards
188.8.131.52.1 The clearances between the top and vertical edges of the door and the frame, and the meeting edges of doors swinging in pairs, shall be 1/8 inch ± 1/16 inch for steel doors and shall not exceed 1/8 for wood doors.
184.108.40.206.2 Clearances shall be measured from the pull face of the doors. In other words, the dimension is measured between the bottom of the door and the top of the flooring or threshold.
220.127.116.11 The clearance under the bottom of the door shall be a maximum of ¾ inch
The only exception is when the bottom of the door is more than 38 inches above the floor, such as counter shutters or a chute door. Then the maximum clearance shall not exceed 3/8 inch, or as specified by the manufacturer’s label.
These standards for maximum gap size can be difficult to maintain when doors are in constant use each day. Every day wear and tear can affect door compliance over time and cause the door to become out of alignment, creating increased gaps between the door and its frame.
A high frequency use door can experience between 400 to 5,000 cycles per day, or 118,000 to 1,500,000 cycles per year! It is important to give your doors a break for a few minutes and check to see if there are any deficiencies that would led to oversized clearances. A fraction of an inch can make a huge difference when it comes to fire door clearances, and protecting the lives of your building occupants.
Find more information on the top 10 fire door deficiencies here.
PREVENT Can Fix Fire Door Clearance Issues
PREVENT’s experienced staff takes the stress out of your annual fire door inspections. We have an Intertek Qualified Personnel (IQP) Fire Door Inspector on staff that leads our team of experienced technicians. We can inspect, repair and coordinate re-certification of your fire doors. We ensure all of your fire doors are operating properly, and no smoke can slip through the cracks.
Give us a call today to discuss your fire door maintenance, we can help. Find out more about our fire door programs here, or call us at 877-392-6074.