Egress Doors

Egress Door Inspections - See NFPA 101

The Life Safety Code, NFPA 101 -2012 defines several door types requiring annual inspection.

These doors are defined by description in Paragraph

‘…The following door assemblies shall be inspected and tested not less than annually…’

(1) Door leaves equipped with panic hardware or fire exit hardware

(2) Door leaves in exit enclosures

(3) Electrically controlled egress doors

(4) Door assemblies with special locking arrangements…

Two more types of doors requiring inspection are identified in paragraph They are identified here for sake of completeness, but are desribed elsewhere on this site.

Paragraph states: Fire-rated door assemblies shall be inspected and tested in accordance with NFPA 80, Standard for Fire Doors and Other Opening Protectives. Smoke door assemblies shall be inspected and tested in accordance with NFPA 105, Standard for Smoke Door Assemblies and Other Opening Protectives. (Editorial note: Fire Doors are described here and smoke doors here.)

A written record of the inspections and testing shall be signed and kept for inspection by the authority having jurisdiction (

Egress Door Inspections

Egress doors are one of the most used and abused components in a facility. And the abuse may not come from occupants. Exterior doors are subject to wind, rain, snow, and settling of the building envelope. All affect proper door operation.

Inspection required of the doors described above is defined in subsequent paragraphs and throughout Chapter 7, Means of Egress.

DepartSure provides these door inspection services to ensure life safety compliance:

1. Annual Egress Door Inspections: We perform annual inspections and functional tests, prepare reports, and maintain the reports as required by NFPA 101. We submit a signed written report for inspection by the AHJ. Reports may be maintained electronically, if desired.

2. Education - Documenting Door Inspections: All door inspections require documentation. And documentation requires proper door identification. To simplify the testing and reporting process, we recommend labeling doors, preferably with discretely placed bar codes. We educate your staff how to define and document doors, including on a BBI drawing (required in healthcare).

3. Education - Preparing for a Door Inspection: The best (i.e. lowest cost) approach, initially, is to review doors prior to a formal inspection. This allows a facility maintenance team to identify easy-to-fix and/or gross deficiencies and have them corrected prior to a formal, documented inspection. But you don’t know what to fix if you don’t know what the inspector looks for! We educate your maintenance staff what to look for – or we can complete an initial, pre-formal inspection and assess deficiencies for you.

Egress Door Commissioning

The codes and standards do not define a requirement for egress door commissioning. But the owner expects a newly constructed or renovated facility to function as designed and intended. To achieve this, a facility commissioning agent (FCxA) is often named and included in project contractual documents.

If acting as part of a commissioning team, DepartSure serves as a door assemblies subject matter expert (SME).  We review and report on any deficiencies encountered on doors identified in commissioning documents.

Sometimes multiple inspections (and reports) are required to attain proper door function.