How Fire Rated Doors Can Save Lives

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From residential and commercial to institutional infrastructure projects, safety and security should be on top of your priorities. By ensuring the safety of your personnel and assets, you will be able to scale your operations more easily and avoid damages that would hurt your balance sheet.

When most people think of safety and security, they immediately think of CCTV cameras and biometric systems. These advanced features may be useful in security practices as they let you keep track of who enters and exits your establishments.

But, as useful as these security devices are, you can’t overlook the fact that your doors are your first line of defense. At the end of the day, the doors at your entrances and hallways play a huge role in keeping your premises safe.

One functional type of door that offers safety is fire rated doors. They are essential in preventing the spread of fire. Every day, we encounter these doors in commercial, institutional, and multi-family residential buildings, but many people are unaware of them. Indeed, the presence of a properly placed, quality fire rated door can mean the difference between life and death in some situations.

What is a fire rated door?

A fire rated door (or simply fire door) has fire resistance qualities and is rated based on how long the door can handle extreme heat and remain intact within the frame that houses it. When used in conjunction with passive fire protection systems, a fire rated door provides reliable fire protection and allows for a safe and unhindered exit from a facility.

Fire rated doors are designed to delay or stop the spread of flames, smoke, and even radiant and conductive heat transmission. Wood, steel, fiberglass, and fire rated glass—or a combination of these—are the commonly used materials in fire rated door manufacturing. Fire rated door assemblies include the door, frame, glazing, hardware, and other components.

More common in commercial buildings than residential properties, this type of door is typically used in areas of egress, such as lobbies, exits, storefronts, and stairwells to meet code requirements and promote occupant safety. Additionally, fire doors are also protective against accidental human impact, as well as blasts, ballistics, and forced entry.

Why do you need fire rated doors?

Entrances and exits are not enough when fire safety and building code compliance are taken into account. Providing means of egress to building occupants can give a sense of safety and security during accidents like structural fires.

Establishing a compartment in buildings by separating lift lobby areas from stairway exits is among the main purposes of fire doors. Simply put, fire doors must offer protection at escape routes to enable people to evacuate a premise safely during an accidental fire.

Not only that but fire doors are also intended to halt the spread of fire and smoke for as long as possible. They are a passive fire safety feature that prevents fire, smoke, and fumes from spreading from one room to another. In this manner, they help firefighters to put out the fire safely and quickly before it can cause severe damage or injuries.

Where would you need a fire rated door?

In general, the primary focus of fire door placements is always safety. Fire doors that protect the building and its occupants for more than 60 minutes are often required where property preservation is crucial.

But, regardless of the type of structure, a fire rated door can be extremely valuable for all types of buildings.

  • Residential properties: A fire door must be installed between the stairs and every room in homes with more than two floors (except toilets or bathrooms). In addition, fire doors are required in loft conversions and between a house and an integrated garage.
  • Non-domestic facilities: There must be a safe escape path in non-domestic structures. Areas that lead to corridors or staircases should have fire doors. Fire doors must have proper signage on both sides, as well as relevant instructions such as “Keep Closed.”
  • Mixed-use buildings: Fire doors are required to separate the commercial and residential areas in mixed-use buildings.

How can you choose a high-quality fire door?

You should prioritize fire rated doors that have been certified for quality while looking for the best selection for fire rated doors. Before these doors are rolled out to end-users, they must be thoroughly tested to ensure their efficacy. By purchasing approved doors, you can be certain that they will deliver the safety and security functions they are intended for.

Besides fire safety elements, aesthetics should also be a consideration. Fire doors can be visually appealing and contribute to your property’s overall attractiveness.

Invest for Fire Safety

Keep in mind that as a property owner, it is your primary responsibility to ensure the safety of your facility and its dwellers and assets. Setting fire prevention and safety measures can save lives and considerably lessen the financial and legal consequences of a fire incident.

How To Maximize The Natural Light In Your Home

Sunlight can make you feel happier and increase your vitamin D intake. Plus, it creates a welcoming atmosphere for guests. Getting enough natural light can be tricky with fewer windows or open spaces, though – so here are a few ideas to bring in more natural light.f

1. Paint With Light Colors

Colors either absorb or reflect light. So, use hues such as white, gray, or tan to lighten up the room. Remember: you can add pops of color through throw pillows, artwork, or rugs. Also, add these colors to your ceiling to make the space feel taller.

In addition, consider the type of paint. For example, use shinier ones like satin or semi-gloss. This can reflect light while adding a sense of personality.

2. Hang Mirrors

Mirrors reflect sunlight while making the space feel larger. This is especially useful for people who live in apartments. Plus, with more natural light bouncing around the walls, the room can feel more relaxing. It might even increase energy levels and reduce feelings of depression.

Also, use other reflective materials in your design. This can include things like glass furniture and metallic lighting or faucets.

3. Enlarge Windows and Doors

If you want to update your windows or doors, this tip fits perfectly. Having larger windows and doors lets in more light and makes a space feel welcoming. It can give off an open and airy vibe.

Look for casements with minimal framework. Picture, bow, or bay windows work best. Plus, larger windows increase ventilation and improve indoor air quality. For your doors, upgrade to a patio or garden-style one.

4. Add Glass Blocks to Your Walls

This is a distinctive design idea that adds character to your home. The glass will reflect light and give you a brighter space. These work well in high-traffic areas, such as kitchens or living rooms.

Another good place for glass is in your basement, which may not have many windows. You can choose from different textures and colors to fit your design style.

5. Keep Up With Window Maintenance

This is a simple task that ensures dirt build-up isn’t blocking light. Rinse your windows with water and dish soap using a microfiber cloth. If you have higher casements, use a sponge mop on a pole. Make sure to spray down the outside of the window with a hose.

Also, while outdoors, trim back your trees so light can shine through on a sunny day. In addition, plant some low-growing perennials to increase curb appeal.

6. Use Lighter Window Treatments

Your heavier drapes may be good for winter. However, lighter materials can let in more sun as the weather warms. Look for sheer curtains in a single panel. Blinds are another excellent option that allows you to control the amount of light.

Solar screens are also perfect for softening sunlight. These can also protect your furniture and carpets from harmful UV radiation.

7. Add Skylights

Skylights can bring in natural light and are an excellent project to add to a home renovation. They are available in various sizes and layouts. Skylights work well in kitchens or bathrooms, which require ample lighting. Plus, they give you a nice view of the sky.

Be sure to hire a professional to install these. Since it cuts into your roof, improper installation could lead to leaks. Once installed, you can enjoy natural light and reduce your electricity bills.

8. Use Reflective Materials for Your Backsplash

Backsplashes are a staple in modern kitchens. If you’re looking to make an update, consider using reflective materials like glass. They give your space a sleek appearance and allow for plenty of natural light.

Consider using recycled glass tiles, too, which are better for the environment. Plus, they are more stain- and mold-resistant, so your kitchen can stay clean. Metal backsplashes, such as stainless steel, are also common. These are durable and easy to maintain.

9. Paint Your Eaves White

The overhangs from your roof can impact how much light is reflected inside. So, painting them white increases their reflective properties. The project doesn’t require major renovations and is a cost-effective solution. Just have someone watch the ladder when you’re working.

Even if you have a differently colored exterior, still consider this project. You usually can’t see the eaves much from the outside, so it won’t impact your curb appeal.

10. Be Smart About Furniture Colors and Layout

If you don’t have many windows, or just have smaller ones, find ways to maximize your existing light. For example, play with the furniture layout. Turn couches towards the windows to reflect light around the rest of the room.

You can also place chairs and shelves in a way that complements the windows rather than blocks them. Then, try to explore lighter colors throughout the decor, including white and shades of gray.

Make Your Home Brighter

Home remodeling and rearranging are great ways to increase a room’s functionality and design. Adding more natural light is a beneficial upgrade for your well-being, so follow these tips to brighten up your space today.


 Evelyn Long is a Baltimore-based writer and the editor-in-chief of Renovated. She publishes home decor advice and product roundups for readers in spaces both big and small.

Raised Flooring Storage

9372_381666885293135_1218299867_nAlthough this would work in only certain rooms it is a great idea isn’t it? The floor to ceiling height in this room is around 14 feet. The floor to top to new raised floor is 20 inches. The drawer is roughly 18 inches tall allowing for a lot of storage. The drawers are a nice touch but to simplify the process another set of doors would work just fine. The doors do not have to have hinges either – it could just be a simple lift out solution. For those with small living areas – which is so hot right now – this idea warrants further research.