automatic sliding doorLast week I started a series of posts looking at the code requirements related to automatic sliding doors – the topic of the first post was the break out / break away function.  While I was reading up on the related code requirements, I noticed something interesting in both the I-Codes and the NFPA codes.

The minimum clear opening width for most doors is 32 inches, measured with the door in the 90-degree open position, between the face of the door and the stop on the frame.  For pairs of doors, at least one leaf must provide this clear opening width, measured from the face of the open door to the edge of the other leaf in the closed position (or to the mullion, if present).

For automatic sliding doors with the break out / break away feature, each set of model codes includes an exception stating that the requirement for one leaf to provide a clear opening width of 32 inches does not apply.  The exceptions are slightly different, with the I-Codes requiring a minimum of 32 inches of clear opening width total (both leaves when broken out).  The NFPA codes require each leaf to provide at least 30 inches clear.

For reference, here are the exceptions:

I-Codes:  For a biparting door in the emergency breakout mode, a door leaf located within a multiple-leaf opening shall be exempt from the minimum 32-inch (813 mm) single-leaf requirement of Section 1010.1.1, provided that a minimum 32-inch (813 mm) clear opening is provided when the two biparting leaves meeting in the center are broken out.

NFPA:  In the emergency breakout mode, a door leaf located within a two-leaf opening shall be exempt from the minimum 32 in. (810 mm) single-leaf requirement of, provided that the clear width of the single leaf is not less than 30 in. (760 mm).

Any questions?

You need to login or register to bookmark/favorite this content.