Smoke dampers and fire dampers are an integral part of the life safety systems that exist in buildings.
What is Smoke and Fire Damper Testing?
Smoke and fire damper systems are intended to keep you safe and to save lives in the case of a fire. The real question becomes, how do you know if they work if no one has tested them? The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has guidelines that are intended to ensure occupants safety, by requiring the inspection and testing of these life saving devices. The guideline requires the inspection of Fire Dampers and Fire Stop Flaps at intervals not exceeding 12 months.
Dynamic Flow Balancing Ltd. can provide inspecting and testing services for these devices.
The following process is applied:
- Mechanical drawings are reviewed, and the locations of the fire dampers are noted and numbered.
- The dampers are then located and first check is to ensure they are accessible, and in the case of access doors in the ceiling, that the doors are sufficiently sized to provide enough room to access and service the dampers.
- There must also be access into the ductwork to reach, test and service the dampers themselves. Access doors must therefore exist in the ductwork, to enable servicing.
- The dampers are then inspected to ensure they are clean and operable.
- The next step is to disconnect the dampers from the fusible links and “drop” test them. This is important to ensure the dampers do not bind and can fully close as required. If the damper track is not installed properly, the damper will only drop part way, and this reduces the effectiveness and purpose of the damper.
- Once proper drop is established, the damper is raised, and the fusible link is re-connected.
- A label is then applied to the duct indicating the damper has been tested, and that it is operating properly.
- A report showing the list of dampers is provided to the building operator confirming the status of each damper.
- If the client is set up for annual checks, we will contact them when the dampers are due for their re-certification testing.
Dynamic Flow Balancing is a Certified Member of the Canadian Associated Air Balance Council.