01 / 06 / 2022 / Standards

UNE 23740-2: the spanish standard on the correct installation, use and maintenance of fire curtains

In the fire protection sector, there are a number of regulations that we must always take into account to promote safety and quality in the manufacture and use of various fire protection systems.

One of these is UNE 23740-2, a standard that regulates fire curtains. But what are the most important parts of this regulation?

UNE 23740-2: What does it regulate?

Fire curtains are essential elements of a building’s fire protection strategy regardless of its layout or activity. They are designed to prevent the spread of a fire, helping to protect the areas adjacent to the place where the fire appeared, minimize damage, and ensure the safety of workers and property.

But using these curtains in a facility is not just a question of good design. We must also take into account the correct installation and maintenance of these elements. Due to the importance of these last two points, this standard was published in September 2019 by the Spanish Association for Standardization (UNE) to establish the specific requirements for the installation, use and maintenance of fire curtains.

Since it was passed, this standard has been applied to all fire curtains, both irrigated and non-irrigated, certified according to the UNE EN 1634-1 standard, already installed and to be installed. Its main goal is to ensure that these systems are functioning properly throughout their service life.

But what specific requirements are set? Let’s start with the first point!

Installation of fire curtains

As per UNE 23740-2, all fire curtains must be installed following the manufacturer’s manual. It must be ensured at all times that the characteristics of the curtain and its installation are covered by the field of application defined in the classification report as per UNE-EN 13501-2 and/or the evaluation of the field of application of the results of the fire resistance test (EXAP UNE-EN 15269-11).

And we must take into account three important points:

  • The field of application: among other things, essential elements such as the maximum certified measures or whether all components of the fire curtain are capable of resisting the fire’s direct attack are determined.
  • The training of installers: they must be properly trained and familiar with all the details and novelties of the product to be installed in each case.
  • The importance of keeping records: every facility must be properly registered and the owner/user of each fire curtain must keep a copy of this record.

Purpose and use of fire curtains

According to UNE 23740-2, the only function that this type of curtain must fulfill is to prevent the spread of a fire and its flames, for a certain time, to areas adjacent to the place where the fire began (this function can only be fulfilled when the curtain is fully deployed).

The curtain is automatically activated following a signal from the fire detection and alarm system installed in the building. It can also be activated after detection of a failure or cut in the primary and secondary power supply.

In addition, the owner/user must retain all documentation relating to the fire curtain, in addition to complying with applicable regulations and requirements to ensure that the system functions properly when necessary.

Maintaining fire curtains

In addition, the UNE 23740-2 standard states that several maintenance tasks need to be undertaken on fire curtains throughout the year…

On the one hand, basic maintenance is required every three months (which can be performed by both specialized and non-specialized professionals).
On the other hand, a more complete and advanced annual maintenance is required, which should be carried out by a suitably trained and qualified professional (with complete and up-to-date knowledge of the product to be maintained).

These maintenance tasks are necessary to detect any irregularities that may affect the correct use of the fire curtain. And bear in mind that any review or operation must be recorded in the fire curtain’s maintenance book, which must be safeguarded for at least 10 years.

Installer and maintainer training

For correct installation and to carry out the necessary checks, it is established that every professional must be specially qualified. This can be demonstrated by:

  • A 16-hour technical training course;
  • Demonstrable hands-on experience of at least three months;
  • And a training update of at least 8 hours every 2 years

If your fire plan includes installing a fire curtain, you must take into account all the requirements of this regulation to ensure the safety and protection of the installations, the goods stored inside and the people who work there. But do you still have questions? Let’s talk.