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Basement/Garage door

Discussion in 'Residential Fire Codes' started by Wrecks24, Jun 27, 2020.

  1. Wrecks24

    Wrecks24 Registered User

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    So I live in a home where the garage/basement is under the house. There is a stairway up to The living room. The stairway “zigzags” back up to the living room with a small platform in the middle. The door at the top of the stairs is basically a standard interior door. My question is, should it be a fire rated door? Seems like the floor of my living room would catch fire before it ever reached this door.
     
  2. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    No

    Unless the local city requires it.

    About how old is the house?

    Normally the door from the garage into the house is either a certain thickness or rated, depending on the year it was built.

    Do you own the house????
     
  3. Wrecks24

    Wrecks24 Registered User

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    Yes I own the house and it was inspected before buying. I just wanna know its right. House was built in 2006. The stairway is sheet rocked, if that matters. The door doesn't open directly to the garage as you go down one set of stairs to a landing, turn and go down another set into the garage/basement
     
  4. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Ok will say it this way

    The door from the garage into the basement or any part of the house

    Should be the one that is either thicker or rated.

    If your house is in an incorporated city, it should meet code.

    Being the owner you can change that door for added safety.
     
  5. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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  6. Wrecks24

    Wrecks24 Registered User

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    Thank you. I live in the county and its not so much me being worried about it as it is for resale later down the road. All the houses in my little subdivision have basically the same set up. We are looking a few years down the road selling and buying a farmhouse.

    The garage is directly under my living room with open floor joists and seems like that would burn before a fire would even reach the door.
     
  7. e hilton

    e hilton Bronze Member

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    Those seem like contradictory responses.
     
  8. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    I try
     
  9. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    So you are standing in the garage

    Look up and see wood studs/ rafters/ supports??

    And the living room or other living is directly above this??
     
  10. Wrecks24

    Wrecks24 Registered User

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    yes, exactly.
     
  11. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Normally there is Rated dry wall on the ceiling

    Give this question to about tuesday

    for others to comment on
     
    ADAguy likes this.
  12. Wrecks24

    Wrecks24 Registered User

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    Apparently thats how we roll in the County, every house in the neighborhood is the exact same way. So I guess my worry about the door is The least of my worries...lol
     
  13. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    There may be a reason it is that way.

    Will let others comment

    Rated dry wall does not cost much and if you can use a screw gun and have a helper, it can be done. Youtube

    Or if you have a construction friend, fix him a steak dinner.

    I am getting ready to redo my garage ceiling

    It has a few foot holes in it.
     
  14. ICE

    ICE Moderator

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    I am not familiar with the codes that are/were in effect in other locations. I can tell you the possibilities that I am familiar with.

    1. The ceiling is protected with 5/8" Type-X drywall or equivalent and so are the elements that support the ceiling such as walls and beams.

    2. The Ceiling is protected with 5/8" Type-X drywall or equivalent but the elements that support the ceiling are protected by 1/2" drywall or equivalent.

    Doors have always been similar to this.....
    solid wood doors not less than 1-3/8 inches in thickness, solid or honeycomb-core steel doors not less than 1-3/8 inches thick, or 20-minute fire-rated doors, equipped with self-closing or automatic-closing and self-latching device.

    I copied this right out of the CRC "solid or honeycomb-core steel doors not less than 1-3/8 inches thick." I have never encountered an 1-3/8" solid steel door. I must be missing something in the translation.

    In my code there's a blurb about the door being "tight fitting" but I can guarantee that my code was never enforced in Tennessee.

    There is a third possibility which is what you have currently. If there were no codes adopted or no oversight, then anything is possible.....and perhaps legal. If it were me I would retrofit to possibility #1.
     
    #14 ICE, Jun 27, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2020
  15. e hilton

    e hilton Bronze Member

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    My wife says I’m very trying. But i just ignore her.
     
  16. ADAguy

    ADAguy Registered User

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    You "should be" concerned. Fire separation of a garage from occupied space, whether adjacent to or above it has always been a tenant of codes. Ask your insurance carrier if it is acceptable to them.
     
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  17. Wrecks24

    Wrecks24 Registered User

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  18. VillageInspector

    VillageInspector Sawhorse

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    The first thing i would do before I went to sleep in that house another night is install a really good smoke detector throughout and the next morning I would install 5/8 sheetrock all over that garage as well as a decorative fire rated entrance door whether its required in your municipality or not.
     
  19. Sifu

    Sifu Gold Member

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    Large areas of TN do not have inspection departments, the more rural the more likely. Sounds like you may have been in one such area. Current code would require 5/8" type X on the ceiling, 1/2" for supporting structure and common walls. Not sure what code would have been enforced (if there was enforcement) at the time but I checked the '03 code and it was the same. I have seen many like it there. Could it be a problem for resale? Maybe. If I were the inspector it wouldn't go unnoticed. Could it be a problem for you and your family? I wouldn't wait to find out. I have seen many garage fires that stopped at that separation. It is a simple but very effective life-safety measure.
     
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  20. JCraver

    JCraver Sawhorse

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    5/8" the ceiling, 1/2" the walls, 1 coat of mud on the seams, and a steel (or solid wood) door at the top of the stairs. Make sure there's a working CO detector on each level of the house too, please.
     
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