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Last edited 04 Nov 2019
Smoke dampers are passive fire protection devices that impede the spread of smoke between different spaces in a building. They are mechanical or intumescent devices, placed within a duct or ventilation opening, which have louvres or shutters that can close automatically preventing the passage of smoke and other products of combustion.
Combined fire and smoke dampers (or fire smoke dampers) prevent the passage of fire as well as smoke and other products of combustion. Typically they do this by closing if a certain temperature is exceeded or if smoke is detected.
Smoke dampers are often operated from a control panel, whereas fire detectors are more frequently operated by mechanical or fusible linkages.
From 1 July 2013, it became a requirement under the Construction Products Regulation for all new fire and smoke dampers used in UK buildings to be CE-marked to indicate product compliance (ref. CIBSE Journal). This recognises the testing standard BS EN 1366 – Fire resistance tests for service installations, which contains test procedures which ensure dampers are installed appropriately.
NB A fire and smoke damper is: 'A fire damper which, in addition to the performance of the fire damper, resists the spread of smoke.' Ref Approved document B, Fire Safety, Volume 2, Buildings other than dwellinghouses (2019 edition).
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