I just saw these doors in a hotel, so it seems like a good time to write about the requirements for doors at an elevator hoistway. Basically, where a corridor is required to have a fire-resistance rating (like in a hotel), openings in the elevator shaft have to be protected by fire door assemblies. Often this is done with an elevator lobby, but in some cases an elevator lobby is not required and the fire door assemblies are provided right at the hoistway.
Here’s where the requirement for opening protectives is stated in the 2018 IBC: 3006.2.1 Rated corridors. Where corridors are required to be fire-resistance rated in accordance with Section 1020.1, elevator hoistway openings shall be protected in accordance with Section 3006.3.
Section 3006.3 requires hoistway opening protection to be provided by either:
- enclosed elevator lobbies with fire partitions and fire door assemblies that limit air infiltration to the stated levels when tested in accordance with UL 1784, or
- enclosed elevator lobbies with smoke partitions (where the building is equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system), with doors that are self-closing or automatic-closing, positive-latching, and limit air infiltration to the stated levels when tested in accordance with UL 1784, or
- additional doors at each elevator hoistway door opening which limit air infiltration to the stated levels when tested in accordance with UL 1784 without an artificial bottom seal, and the doors must be readily openable from the elevator side without a key, tool, special knowledge or effort
This hotel does not have elevator lobbies, hence the swinging doors at the hoistways. Since the swinging doors would not be user-friendly during normal operation of the elevator, the doors are held open on magnetic holders and will close when the fire alarm is activated. I have to say…I would have not have used brass anodized continuous hinges and brass powder-coated closers – white would have blended much better. And these doors don’t appear to have gasketing or door bottoms, so I’m not sure how the UL 1784 air infiltration requirement is being met.