NFPA 80

There are many standards and codes related to fire doors and fire closures. Cornell is proud to be at the forefront on fire solution innovations, including NFPA 80 standards.

What is NFPA 80?

What is NFPA 80?

NFPA 80 is the standard used by designers and contractors for “Fire Doors and Other Opening Protectives” published by the National Fire Protections Association.  The codes, standards, recommended practices and guides are created by the consensus development process as approved by ANSI (American National Standards Institute). This process is designed to establish rules and promote fairness.

The standards found in NFPA 80 address installing, testing, modifying or repairing opening protectives. 


What exactly are codes and standards?

A code is a set of rules or laws that specify the minimum acceptable level of safety for constructed objects such as buildings and non-building structures. Building codes are legally enforceable and are designed to protect public health, safety and welfare as they relate to the construction and occupancy of buildings and structures. Code publications, such as the International Building Code, must be adopted by a state or local jurisdiction before they become enforceable.

A standard is basically a collection of best practices developed by consensus methods. They may influence or be incorporated into code. Standards may or may not be legally enforceable and may or may not be legally binding.

Over the years, many fire tragedies have occurred that influence new code and standard development and adoption of new code mandates to help prevent such tragedies from happening again. 

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Basic components of NFPA 80

NFPA 80 stipulates general requirements and lays the groundwork for minimum requirements regarding installation, inspection, testing, detection, activation and modification of opening protectives, to name just a few. It addresses various opening protectives including fire rated swing doors, fire rated sliding doors, fire rated doors, rolling fire doors, fire rated windows and even fire rated proscenium openings. It provides direction for the acceptable location of fire detection and activation devices such as smoke detectors and fusible links and will list the appropriate reference standard associated with those devices, such as NFPA 72.

The standard also addresses certain fire opening jamb construction, allowable floor coverings, acceptable lintel construction and appropriate mechanical attachment requirements.

NFPA 80 recognizes that the authority having jurisdiction has the final approval in allowing any installation, test, modification or retrofit desired by the party of interest.

 

When NFPA 80 factors in

When an architect, engineer or builder is in the process of designing a new building, an addition or upgrade, NFPA 80 becomes an important factor when choosing fire rated doors, fire door closures, fire shutters or any type of fire protection solutions. Designers can use the standards listed to help choose various fire rated closure products that help meet not only the solution needed but which fire door products have the most favorable installation, inspection and activation options. There are many options and variations to choose from and many manufacturers offer guidelines that can aide in choosing the best product. 

 

Fire Door Installation, Testing and Inspection

All fire rated doors and opening protectives must be tested and inspected annually by the building owner or property manager, and NFPA 80 publishes these guidelines to help ensure life safety and property protection. Some of the topics covered in the NFPA 80 are operability, door blockage, replacement, labeling and removal for rolling fire doors, fire shutters and fire protective openings. 

 

Fire Closure Diagrams and Schematics

An extended Annex section has various useful diagrams, charts and schematics to provide explanatory information relevant to the standard.

A technical committee of industry experts from various door and window manufacturing companies convene to develop the language of the standard for publication in subsequent issues. Updated publications are released every few years and reflect the work completed by the consensus process within the committee.  

Further details can be found on the National Fire Protection Association website at NFPA.org, or in the most current NFPA 80 publication.

For help with any fire rated doors, fire protective solutions, fire shutters or other fire rated closure product information or guidance, our support team stands willing and ready to help.

 

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