Focus: Fire-Life Safety / Column

Regulations, Codes & Standards Q&A: Ceiling tile replacement

Brad Keyes discusses regulations for ceiling tile replacement

By Brad Keyes / Special to Healthcare Facilities Today


Q: I have several ceiling tiles (approximately 52) that are scratched or damaged that has sprinkler heads in them. Is there a code that references or mandates the replacement of the ceiling tiles? Also, I was told once the old/current sprinkler heads are removed to replace the ceiling tiles, new sprinkler heads have to be replaced. Is that true?

A: If the ceiling tiles are stained, most surveyors will have a problem with that as that implies water which can lead to mold or mildew. If they cite the stained ceiling tiles, it would be likely be cited under an Infection Control standard.  

If the ceiling tiles have gaps or cracks wider than 1/8-inch then that will likely be cited under a sprinkler installation standard or a smoke detector installation standard, as the ceiling needs to resist the passage of smoke in order for the smoke detectors and/or sprinkler to function properly. 

But a ceiling tile that is scratched is not a Life Safety Code deficiency and likely would not be cited. 

Yes… you cannot re-install used sprinklers (see section 6.2.1 of NFPA 13-2010), so if you need to remove the sprinkler head to change the ceiling tiles, then that is a great time to update to a newer style that uses escutcheons that are removable to allow easy replacement of ceiling tiles.   

Brad Keyes, CHSP, is the owner of KEYES Life Safety Compliance, and his expertise is in the management of the Life Safety Program, including the Environment of Care and Emergency Management programs.



March 18, 2020


Topic Area: Regulations, Codes & Standards


Recent Posts

How Technology is Evolving Healthcare Design

Emerging technology is changing the way healthcare facilities are designed from the very beginning.


Cedars-Sinai Joins White House AI Consortium

Cedars-Sinai has also joined the TRAIN group, which is led by Microsoft.


Update Survey Spotlights Pay for Security Professionals 

Managers can sort the salary data based on titles, responsibility, gender, location, experience and certification.


OSF HealthCare Saint Elizabeth Medical Center – Peru Opens

The newly opened hospital is more focused on outpatient services.


Healthcare Ranks Highest for Ransomware Complaints: Report

The healthcare and public health sector filed 249 ransomware complaints to the FBI in 2023.


 
 


FREE Newsletter Signup Form

News & Updates | Webcast Alerts
Building Technologies | & More!

 
 
 


All fields are required. This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.