Fire dampers are an important part of your fire barrier system. Prevent has been inspecting and repairing them for over a decade. One thing we noticed with our customers is the main reason fire dampers fail inspection has remained the same: Non-functioning Actuators.
We are referring to electronic dampers, of course. Actuators keep the damper open and when they it closes (partially or fully) it affects air flow. In hospitals, having limited or no airflow disturbs the positive or negative pressure in the rooms (also see Are Your Fire Dampers Costing Your Facility Extra Money).
So what causes actuators to fail?
Some common reasons why an actuator can stop working properly are:
Sometimes the linkage is not properly connected to the shaft and needs to be tightened. When this happens, the motor will continue to run to keep the damper open. Other times the actuator is not set correctly and won’t close the damper all the way. After a small adjustment these issue are usually resolved and the actuator is back in business.
Some dampers are notorious for not being able to open the damper back up after a test or power failure. They often have to be manually opened again. This happens when the actuator is not strong enough to re-open them. On the other hand, there are some that will cease up and not close the damper when activated.
The bottom line is if your actuators are not working properly, your fire dampers fail their inspection.
So how do you avoid actuators from failing?
Maintaining your fire dampers will help you to spot these problems before they have the potential to fail in a fire. A properly-functioning fire barrier system is vital to keeping fires from spreading. When we perform fire damper inspections and repairs, we have your patients’/building occupants’ safety in mind.
To learn more about staying compliant or about how to stretch your fire damper payments over three years, call 1-877-392-6074 to speak to a local representative. Or you can request a free online quote.