A smoke seal is a brush that goes around a door, or a door frame, to prevent smoke from passing through the gaps. The smoke seal is an integral part of preventing toxic smoke from passing into the...Continue Reading
A smoke seal is a brush that goes around a door, or a door frame, to prevent smoke from passing through the gaps. The smoke seal is an integral part of preventing toxic smoke from passing into the areas of the building which are not on fire.
Given the dangers of smoke inhalation, cold smoke seals are an integral part fire protection regulations. Smoke seals and intumescent strips are required on all fire doors according to the British Standard, for example. This is so the fire escape route provides a safer way to exit a building.
The exact requirement in the UK is for all fire doors to have a 30 minute or higher resistance time. Everything from the hinges and glazing to the door stops and smoke strips must comply with regulation.
Smoke seals are usually nylon or neoprene, and look like a brush. Without knowing, they could be mistaken for heat insulation or to cushion a hinge, but they simply act as a smoke barrier. They work by blocking smoke which loses heat and falls towards the ground, preventing it from seeping underneath and around doors.
How to fit cold smoke seals
A smoke seal can be placed in one of two places: on a door stop or on the door itself. Most fire doors now come with grooves already designed for the smoke seals. You start by measuring the height of the door, and cut the smoke seal strip accordingly. Usually, they will come with an adhesive backing – if not, an appropriate fire protection adhesive must be purchased.
The strip will be placed within the groove. Before doing so, however, ensure it is cleaned and has no grease or dirt. It’s important to check that the cold smoke seal installation hasn’t now prevented the fire door from self-closing. If it has, then adjust the door closer until it does.
Difference between smoke seals and intumescent strips
Intumescent strips are similar to smoke seals, but they’re designed to protect from fire itself as opposed to smoke. This is generally why both are necessary for full compliance with regulations.
Intumescent strips have a different composition, as they’re designed to expand in response to high temperatures. Cold smoke wouldn’t activate it, but a bare flame certainly would. The seal expands rapidly, which will help seal the gap around a door frame. This is designed to help contain fires, and keep the fire exit routes more safe.
Smoke seals are used in conjunction with intumescent strips, as they help fight off the smoke. This isn’t an either/or situation, with both of their jobs being vital to modern passive fireproofing methods. Generally, however, it’s common to see intumescent strips being sold with smoke seals already integrated, making it safer and easy for installation.
CLM Fireproofing are the UK’s leading experts in passive fire protection. We are on-hand to provide specialist installation and consulting services. Our operatives are fully compliant with the latest industry regulations, so our clients can feel confident that their building is protected from fire. To speak to one of our passive fire protection specialists, contact CLM Fireproofing today