Smoke vents are crucial to buildings when it comes to fire safety. Should a fire hazard take place, smoke vents are essential to not only preserving the building’s structural integrity but also protecting lives. To work properly, they need regular inspection and maintenance – something that is, sadly, often neglected by building owners. Let’s further discuss the significance of maintenance for this type of unit and some good maintenance practices.
Why Preventative Maintenance for Smoke Vents is Important
Many commercial building owners often find themselves looking for the most affordable operating costs that they either neglect maintenance for certain parts of the building or keep maintenance to the bare minimum. They do not consider the fact that the costs of equipment failure and/or damages from hazards can quickly add up and exceed the cost of regular, thorough maintenance. This is especially true when it comes to smoke vents. If they are well kept up with, they can help:
- Release hazardous smoke, heat, and gasses from the building in case of a fire
- Create smoke-free routes for building occupants to escape
- Facilitate firefighting operations in increasing visibility and locating the source of the fire
- Reduce the thermal effects of the fire on structural components of the building
To have access to the great benefits of a smoke vent, preventative maintenance is a must. Be proactive, not reactive!
Good Maintenance Practices
Meeting Maintenance Standards
The Fire Marshals’ Office is now following the NFPA 204 Standard for Smoke and Heat Venting. Specifically, chapter 12 of this standard specifies mandatory guidelines for smoke vents inspection and maintenance. Building owners who fail to abide by the regulation are subjected to both prosecution and heavy fines.
Carrying out Routine Maintenance
Regular maintenance goes hand-in-hand with cost savings since it gives you a chance to detect issues with your smoke vent from early on and prevent them from developing into system failures. Also, the more you can stay on top of your smoke vent, the longer that your ventilation system will last. For those reasons, we highly recommend you to have your smoke vent inspected at least once a year by qualified maintenance staff. If possible, have them serviced twice a year.
Replace Old Units
An old, dysfunctional smoke vent can be hazardous to your building, which defeats the purpose of having one. If your smoke vent is outdated, it is high time you searched the market and find a new one. Also, if your fusible link is more than 5 years old, you need to replace it as well.
Design Components, Inc. – Your Trusted Source for Quality Smoke Vents
At DCI, we offer two different types of smoke vents that will fit your commercial building needs. Whether it is a mechanical smoke vent or drop-out smoke vent, our products are UL listed and FM approved. With proper care and regular maintenance, DCI’s smoke vents will keep your building and occupants safe.