The fire door
Every place with a big flow of people, where it is compulsory the release of CPI (Certificate of fire prevention), must be fitted out with emergency exits and fire doors.
The great part of doors and windows, fitted in hotels, hospitals, schools, care homes, etc. are conformed to Resistance to Fire, i.e. they’re certified as fire doors. Their function is to seal off a room, so as to create a barrier against potential flames, heat and smoke, that developed during a fire, and to avoid the spreading to next rooms.
According to their position, they must keep the EI features, i.e. heat and smoke insulation for many minutes, that may be 15’, if used as door of a hotel room, or 120’, if fitted along an emergency exit.
The corridors of hotels become deadly traps in case of fire, because immediately invaded by the smoke of a fire, which started for example in a hotel room in which there are furniture and coverings certified in Class 1 of Reaction to Fire, but however they’re combustible materials. It is necessary to create a way out free from toxic and corrosive smokes, emitted by the materials inside the rooms.
The problem occurs when it is necessary to change the standard doors in a hotel and make them fire doors.
The fire-retardant or intumescent coating is not enough to certify a standard door as a fire door; inner structure, gasket, hinge, handle, frame, etc. must be tested and certified in Resistance to Fire, moreover a self-closing device must be fitted.
Of course if the door is coated, the use of a fire-retardant coating is compulsory. In this way the class of the door doesn’t get worse through the application of a standard combustible coating system.