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Why Your Church Should Install Fire-Rated Doors

While many people only think about church on Sundays, your church building might be bustling with activity every day of the week. From community meetings to bible studies to weddings and funerals, the number of people in your church can vary widely at any given time. Sometimes, the building is packed, while other days, there might only be one or two people inside. 

In order to protect all of these people in the case of fire, it’s important that you install the right fire-rated doors in your church. According to the National Fire Protection Agency, religious buildings suffered an average of 1,890 fires per year. While candles are responsible for some of those fires, the vast majority originate in cooking areas—where many different people gather throughout the week.

The right fire-rated doors can significantly limit the damage caused by a fire, especially when people use them in conjunction with other fire safety equipment, like sprinklers.

In this post, we’ll look at how fire-rated doors work and why they play such an important role in your church’s fire safety plan.

What Is a Fire-Rated Door?

Fire-rated doors have been tested by an independent group, like the Underwriter Laboratories (UL), to determine how long the assembly can withstand fire conditions, including heat and smoke. Fire-rated doors can be crafted from wood with fire ratings up to 90 minutes or from metal, which can achieve ratings up to 3 hours.

All parts of the door are rated separately, including door frames, windows, louvers, and locksets. The overall fire rating of your door will depend on the part with the lowest rating. When you’re purchasing a fire-rated door, make sure to pay attention to the fire rating of all of the door’s elements to fully understand your assembly.

Fire doors are actually an excellent value. Fire-rated doors offer superior insulation, vandalism resistance, and durability compared to non-fire-rated doors, ensuring valuable protection for churches.

Incorporating Fire Doors into Your Fire Safety Plan

Fire-rated doors prevent unchecked fire spread within different parts of your church building. However, these doors intend to control more than just flames.

Fires produce lots of smoke and other toxic vapors. These fumes are responsible for the majority of fire deaths. When installed properly, fire-rated doors keep flames, heat, and smoke at bay. They are designed to protect a space while the fire department arrives and attempts to extinguish the fire.

When you’re installing fire-rated doors, you should start with your local and state safety regulations. Municipalities often have strict fire safety requirements, with fire-rated doors playing a key role in regulations. They provide minimum ratings for various areas and structures, safeguarding your building and preventing costly fines.

Regulations specify fire containment time and other necessary requirements for compliance. You’ll likely need illuminated exit signs pointing the way to fire exits, too. Most fire doors are required to close automatically and to have easily operated exit devices.

Fire-rated door installation is just as important as the rating on the door itself. An incorrectly installed door could compromise its fire rating, allowing rapid fire and smoke damage bypass.

Common problems include:

  • Gaps between the door and the frame
  • Improper or non-rated hinges and hardware
  • Missing or poorly installed seals
  • Ineffective door closers

Correct installation significantly protects church attendees, staff, and guests in case of a fire.

Your Home for Fire-Rated Doors

CDF Distributors offers a range of wood and metal fire-rated doors for churches, warehouses, and commercial buildings. You can even customize doors in accordance with your needs. We offer a number of different styles and finishes, along with glass and louver kits. If you want more information on purchasing fire-rated doors for your church, contact CDF Distributors today!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

July 12, 2021
Wayne Foreman

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