Fire Dampers: The Most Effective Way of Saving your Building from Fire Outbreaks

Fire Dampers

Fires can break out anywhere at any time; this can happen at the most unexpected times. A fire outbreak is especially dangerous at commercial buildings where many people gather. That is why commercial buildings need to have a strict and efficient fire safety system in place to ensure the safety of the people who either work in the building or occupy it for some other reason. One way of ensuring fire security is by installing fire dampers. Read on to know more about them.

What are fire dampers?

Fire dampers refer to a device that has lifesaving properties. This device is designed with the aim of preventing the spread of fire or smoke throughout the building in case of a fire outbreak. A mechanical fire damper is designed to spring shut and stop the fire from spreading to other parts of the building with the help of the HVAC system. Whereas the electric smoke and fire damper not only prevents the fire from spreading but also make sure that the cold and hot smoke does not spread. 

What are the types of fire dampers?

Three types of fire dampers are discussed below:

  • Dynamic: This type of fire damper is installed in the vertical barriers and consists of a spring-loaded mechanism. In the event of a fire, the mechanism of the damper comes into play, causing the doors of the dampers to get shut. But the fan of the system continues to work and create pressure. This generated pressure prevents the doors of the damper from opening.
  • Static: This damper is installed in the horizontal barriers and is designed like a curtain. In a fire outbreak, the curtain tends to drop, which prevents the smoke, heat, and flames from passing. This type of damper is installed in places where the ducting fans stop functioning in case of fire detection.
  • Smoke/fire: These dampers are capable of blocking both smoke as well as fire. Fire/smoke dampers are the ideal dampers for any building. However, not in all cases, sometimes you might want to let out the smoke just to inform the occupiers about the fire outbreak without unleashing the fire. 

Fire damper testing

In contemporary times, numerous buildings are equipped with fire dampers to ensure safety from fires. These fire dampers need annual maintenance for proper functioning. But since most of these cannot be easily accessed due to restrictions, their maintenance can become a difficult task. In some cases, attention is mainly placed on the visible equipment of fire security that includes sprinklers, fire alarms, etc., resulting in fire damper testing often getting neglected.  

To be sure that your building is secure in case of fire outbreaks, it is important to regularly test fire dampers. These devices should be inspected at the time of installation and thereafter on an annual basis. This inspection must be conducted by trained personnel so that they are capable of accessing the damper without causing disruptions to the operations going on in the building. Prevention is better than cure, so rather than regretting later, it is better to get your damper inspected at regular intervals.

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