Should I Have Fire Rated Exterior Doors for My Home?
Thursday, February 5, 2015 8:18:36 AM America/Los_Angeles
If you have any concerns at all about your home and your family’s safety, then installing fire doors in your house is a great option to look into. Fire doors that are strategically placed and properly installed can be lifesavers in the event of a house fire. These doors slow the spread of fires and allow more time for you and your family to escape as well as more time for firefighters to contain indoor infernos. These types of doors have a wide range of ratings: anywhere from 20 to 180 minutes. Residential fire doors, for example, are typically 20-minute doors, meaning that a hungry fire won’t be able to break through it in less than 20 minutes. However, it is also important to remember that fire doors won’t be effective if surrounding walls aren’t fire resistant, too. These doors are commonly made from fiberglass or wood with a metal core. Fire doors close automatically by utilizing an electromagnetic coil, which is fitted with the home’s fire safety system. When a fire begins and your home’s alarms start sounding, fire doors will shut on their own, disallowing the spread of fire and smoke. However, not all fire doors are self-closing and ones that are must be maintained regularly. Many fire doors use expandable materials, which allow the door to enlarge when exposed to heat. This design allows the door to create an airtight seal, which further prevents the spread of smoke and fire. It is important to remember, though, that fire doors that seal like this cannot be opened during the seal. Homeowners should take special consideration when deciding where to place self-sealing fire doors. While placing them in rooms within the house are probably not a great idea, they would be useful installed in places such as a garage. Examples of well-placed fire doors include areas between sleeping rooms, and places where fire danger is most real, such as the laundry room or where any gas appliances are located. However, fire doors are complex mechanisms and require professional installation: you don’t want to skimp out on getting them installed correctly just to save a few bucks. A properly installed fire door can be the thing that saves your home, your family, and your possessions if and when a blaze ever breaks out in your house.
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