Fire safety equipment is a valuable investment for ensuring our life and property safety. When designing fire safety measures for buildings, a product-oriented approach is often adopted, closely following product competencies while neglecting or not fully adhering to the assembly requirements of the product.

However, to achieve the necessary fire safety level, the product’s qualifications alone constitute only one-third of the requirements. It should be considered as part of a holistic system that includes the right installation and inspection. Otherwise, life safety equipment may not fulfil its purpose, leaving the areas where it is applied unprotected.

Construction Products Directive 305/2011/EC requires construction products to be CE marked according to the requirements of the relevant technical specifications (harmonised EN standards or European Technical Assessments) and based on the European Assessment document (EAD). In terms of Assessment and Verification of Constancy of Performance (AVCP), the manufacturer must work with an Approved Certification Body and/or Notified Laboratory.

Efectis has deep-rooted expertise in testing, inspection and certification. In this way, it provides certification services upon tests, inspections performed by the Efectis team or upon manufacturers’ requests (tests carried out by other notified bodies and/or accredited laboratories subject to approval).

What is considered during the assembly inspection of fan product groups?

When there are more than two products in the product range for which testing is requested, this range is referred to as a ‘fan family’. The fan family includes fans required in small, large and medium sizes, utilising the same hardware and design principles. This approach ensures validity for other dimensions that fall between the upper and lower size limits. During the assembly inspection process in the field, the primary consideration is that the relevant fan adheres to the dimensions allowed by the test, as the purpose of the test is to determine compliance within the fan family.

Fan motors are particularly susceptible to the effects of fire. It is crucial that the engine used in the product assembled in the field is of the same brand and model as the product being tested.
For fan motors to operate correctly, a durable power supply is necessary, achievable only with insulated cables. The right application of the brand and model of the cable, along with proper insulation and positioning on the case, must be ensured during installation. The design of the fan disc and the number of blades, as well as the connection (welding, rivets, etc.) between the fan hub and the blades, must be the same as those tested.

In the case of radial jet fans, it is crucial that the size and design features of the nozzle section, which is the side where the air is directed, match those of the product under test. Additionally, care must be taken to prevent any damage to the nozzle section during transportation and installation.

What is considered during the assembly inspection of damper product groups?

Like fans, fire and smoke dampers are also tested as a product family, where upper and lower size limits of the damper type are established. The primary focus during the assembly inspection process in the field is to determine whether the relevant damper complies with the dimensions allowed within the damper family.

The fundamental element providing fire and smoke insulation in a damper is the damper’s blade/flap. The material type used in the damper blade, along with its dimensions and assembly details, holds utmost importance. It must precisely conform with the parameters specified in the test report, and any damper blades found to be damaged during transportation or installation should be replaced. Attention should be given to the elements that the damper blade contacts when in the fully closed position, and any issues that may lead to leakage should be addressed.

The motor of the damper blades should be of the brand and model stated in the test report. Even if the damper size increases or decreases, the brand and model of the motor should remain consistent. Similarly, the dimensions of the structure on which the motor is mounted, referred to as the support structure of the engine (also called the support sheet), should remain unchanged within the damper family.

Various materials, such as mastic, wick, porcelain and paper, are utilised to fasten sheets together. All these items must be employed in the field with the same brand, model and quantity as used in the assembly for testing. No substitute materials can be used or omitted.
The same principle applies to fasteners; it is crucial to use the exact type, variety and quantity specified in the test.

For both fire and smoke dampers, considerations related to the use and location of the product are essential for fire safety. Dampers must be installed as tested and allowed in the test report. Damper groups are classified as horizontal (ho) or vertical (ve) based on whether they are tested on a vertical wall or on a floor. Therefore, it is imperative to ensure they are used in accordance with the class in which they are tested. Additionally, dampers may have different variations within the channel or wall during fire resistance testing; these variations cannot be used as substitutes for each other. Consequently, using damper groups in the field should align with the assembly type in which they are tested. It is important to note that incorrectly applied smoke dampers represent a significant threat to fire safety, significantly altering the fire resistance test temperature of smoke control dampers.

Fire resistance test and classification reports should be carefully examined in order to carry out the aforementioned controls. The rules specified in these reports should be taken into consideration to select the product suitable for the intended use and to ensure the declared fire resistance performance. It should not be forgotten that the fire resistance class and certification specified for the product is valid for the cases where the product is used with the details specified in the report. For this reason, it is important to check the product groups used in the smoke evacuation system on the project as well as during the commissioning phase. This is important both for the proper use of the products and for ensuring a safe environment for people in emergencies, protecting the integrity of the building and evacuating hot smoke. Safe and effective use of products can only be ensured by carrying out these controls.

To ensure a high level of fire safety, a profound understanding of national fire regulations and active fire safety systems, as well as knowledge of both material and passive fire safety, is necessary.

With over 70 years of fire safety expertise, the Efectis fire consultancy team crafts customised fire safety solutions tailored to each building’s unique requirements. With its high level of proficiency in both national and international standards, Efectis stands ready to fulfil all your fire safety needs.

For more information, please contact turkiye@efectis.com