Printed from the blog of Lori Greene, AHC/CDC, CCPR, FDAI
Allegion
Email: lori_greene@allegion.com, Blog: www.idighardware.com or www.ihatehardware.com


Feb 22 2016

WWYD? Vision Lights in Wood Fire Doors

Category: Doors & Frames,Fire DoorsLori @ 12:07 am Comments (19)
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Wood Door Vision PanelIn the 2010 edition of NFPA 80 – Standard for Fire Doors and Other Opening Protectives, a requirement was added stating that glazing materials in vision panels in new wood doors must be installed in accordance with inspection service procedures and under label service (paragraph 4.4.3.1).  The explanatory paragraph in Annex A (A.4.4.3.1) clarified that new wood fire doors are required to have the glazing and light kits installed at the door manufacturer, or under label service (ie. in a wood door shop approved to modify fire doors).

This requirement has not changed in the 2013 or 2016 editions of NFPA 80, and the NFPA 80-2016 Handbook explains why this requirement was added – it is difficult or impossible for inspectors to determine in the field whether all installation standards were met, and clips and other specialized installations used for vision panels on wood fire doors can’t be verified in the field.  Because of these difficulties specific to wood doors, glazing must be installed and shipped with the door.  This requirement for glazing installed at the factory or in an authorized shop does not apply to hollow metal doors.

My question for you is this…if you supply, specify, or install wood fire doors, is the glazing typically installed in accordance with NFPA 80 – at the factory or in an authorized wood shop?  If not, why not?  Has the pre-installation of the glazing resulted in any problems during shipping or on-site?

19 Responses to “WWYD? Vision Lights in Wood Fire Doors”

  1. Bob Caron says:

    Glazing contractors are not certified to do this? How about if the light kits are steel?

    I haven’t ordered wood fire doors with glass by others in a long time but I wasn’t aware that this regulation is probably why.

    • Lori says:

      NFPA 80 says: “4.4.3.1* For new wood doors, glazing materials in vision panels shall be installed in labeled glass light kits or in accordance with the fire door listing and shall be installed in accordance with inspection service procedure and under label service.”

      It sounds like steel light kits are also supposed to be installed at the factory or in an authorized wood shop.

      – Lori

  2. Leo says:

    It’s not clear that if you use a Steel Light Kit it has to be installed at the factory, depends if you read it “shall be installed in labeled glass light kits. or in accordance with the fire door listing and shall be installed” or you read it “shall be installed in labeled glass light kits or in accordance with the fire door listing. and shall be installed”.

    • Lori says:

      Reading the NFPA 80 section (“4.4.3.1* For new wood doors, glazing materials in vision panels shall be installed in labeled glass light kits or in accordance with the fire door listing and shall be installed in accordance with inspection service procedure and under label service,”) I think it is clear that the glass can be installed in labeled kits or per the listing AND must be installed under label service. Maybe some of the wood door manufacturers could weigh in on this subject.

      – Lori

  3. Sergio Enriquez says:

    To supply Mexico’s projects, these light kits, should be installed on factory, and protected with carton to shipping requirements… Obiously if we need to supply a small quantity, with small vision light area and for 20min of time compliance – install these on site would be considered.

  4. Mark Lineberger says:

    I find the wording very clear. As with anything else door-related, it comes down to accepted past industry practices and a lack of understanding. This is a big problem – if the expectation is that the door/glazing “works” at the time of a fire – because in many cases the glass is not properly installed. This is primarily the case with wood doors. The glass may be held in place for normal use, but there’s a good chance it was not installed following manufacturer’s requirements. In fairness to the glaziers, there are some cases where the manufacturer’s installation instructions or required methods are less than obvious/clear or well documented. With the variety of glazing materials and methods for fire-rated openings, I’m not sure how the AHJ’s can reasonably be assured the work was properly completed. I could get behind a certified dealer/installer model as each manufacturer can have differing requirements. The “label service” model is expensive and adds little, if any, value. However, that’s all we have right now.

  5. Carol says:

    Our practice is to quote and detail fire rated wood doors with glass included. Factory installed rated glass per their standards and how they tested doors.

    • Eric says:

      Carol,
      How do you handle non-rated wood doors on the same project? Do you have the non-rated glass factory installed? What about the glass in HM doors (rated and non-rated)? If you only include rated glass, how well is that accepted from the GC’s standpoint….to include it on some doors but not others?
      Thanks,

      • Lori says:

        Very good questions!

        – Lori

      • Carol says:

        Eric,

        Yes, we quote and detail our non-rated wood doors factory install, unless there is a special glass that they want to supply. Now as far as hollow metal, we exclude glass and supply kits only unless we are requested. Some of our contractors request we supply exterior HM door with glass… this can be very expensive. Once they see the price, they want to supply their own glass. With exterior openings that require NOA or FBC we follow the hurricane approval and we call out type glass that is required to meet the approval.

  6. Jim Hooker says:

    At TCH, we install them in our authorized wood door shop!

  7. Joel Niemi says:

    doesn’t this say (breaking it up into clauses)

    “4.4.3.1* For new wood doors, glazing materials in vision panels shall be installed

    in labeled glass light kits

    or in accordance with the fire door listing

    and shall be installed in accordance with inspection service procedure and under label service.”

    As I’d read this, install the glazing material in a labeled kit, or in accordance with the door listing, AND do this in accordance with the inspection service procedure AND under label service.

    Some times breaking up the text, and adding a period or two to separate the steps, could help in codes.

    • Lori says:

      I think it is being interpreted this way in the industry:

      “4.4.3.1* For new wood doors, glazing materials in vision panels shall be installed in labeled glass light kits or in accordance with the fire door listing

      AND shall be installed in accordance with inspection service procedure and under label service.” (regardless of whether it’s in a labeled glass light kit or some other arrangement that is in accordance with the fire door listing)

      – Lori

  8. Robin says:

    Lori,
    In MA, we are still using IBC 2009 which references NFPA 80-2007. Did this requirement exist in the 2007 version?

    • Lori says:

      Hi Robin –

      This requirement was added in the 2010 edition of NFPA 80 – it is not on the 2007 edition. I believe Massachusetts is moving to the 2015 IBC soon, which references the 2012 edition of 80, which includes the requirement.

      – Lori

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