2021 NFPA 3 Standard - Current Edition
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  • Description

    Help ensure fire protection and life safety systems are functioning in accordance with design criteria by following the commissioning program outlined in NFPA 3, 2021 edition.

    It's critical to have access to the latest requirements for fire protection and life safety system commissioning to safeguard lives and property.

    Created at the request of the National Institute of Building Sciences, NFPA 3, Standard for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems, covers the appropriate process and documentation for the commissioning of active and passive fire protection and life safety systems. Specifically, NFPA 3 provides documented confirmation that new and existing fire protection and life safety systems are installed per the owner's project requirements and comply with local regulations.

    The 2021 edition offers leading criteria for documenting that life-saving building systems are designed, installed, and functioning correctly.

    NFPA 3 is the first and only standard outlining the commissioning process for fire protection and life safety systems. This vital resource offers qualifications of commissioning team members and associated roles and responsibilities within the commissioning process for commissioning of new and existing buildings.

    The 2021 edition of NFPA 3 contains new annex language to provide clarity on the differences between simple and complex commissioning projects.

    Content also includes forms and reports offering a baseline for documentation.

    Make sure commissioning is compliant with the most current standard.

    There's peace of mind in being able to document that the fire protection and life safety systems in your building are functioning as intended by design. Get the help you need to satisfy project requirements, owner operational needs, and local guidelines by ordering your copy of NFPA 3, Standard for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems, 2021 edition.

    Interested in other editions of NFPA 3? Use the drop down menu above to select the edition year you need.

  • Table of Contents (2021 Current Edition)

    NFPA® 3 Standard for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems, 2021 Edition

    Chapter 1 Administration
    1.1 Scope.
    1.2 Purpose.
    1.3 Application.
    1.4 New Technology.
    Chapter 2 Referenced Publications
    2.1 General.
    2.2 NFPA Publications.
    2.3 Other Publications.
    2.4 References for Extracts in Mandatory Sections.
    Chapter 3 Definitions
    3.1 General.
    3.2 NFPA Official Definitions.
    3.3 General Definitions.
    Chapter 4 General
    4.1 Goals.
    4.2 Objectives.
    4.3 Qualifications.
    4.4 Commissioning Record.
    Chapter 5 Commissioning
    5.1 General.
    5.2 Planning Phase.
    5.3 Design Phase.
    5.4 Construction Phase.
    5.5 Occupancy Phase.
    Chapter 6 Commissioning of Existing Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems
    6.1 General.
    6.2 Re-commissioning.
    6.3 Retro-commissioning.
    Annex A Explanatory Material
    Annex B Qualifications of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems Commissioning Team Personnel
    Annex C Responsibilities for Members of the Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems Commissioning Team
    Annex D Sample Basis of Design Narrative Report
    Annex E Sample Commissioning Documentation
    Annex F Informational References
  • How the NFPA Handbooks Differ from Codes and Standards

    THE NFPA HANDBOOKS DIFFER FROM CODES AND STANDARDS

    Ever wonder what the difference is between an NFPA® handbook and a code or standard? We’re glad you asked.

    NFPA codes and standards both provide requirements for achieving outcomes. Handbooks take a deeper dive, providing the full text of a code or standard as well as expert commentary and features such as graphics, decision trees, testing procedures, case studies, sample forms and checklists, and other helpful aids to give a better understanding of the reasoning behind the requirements and how to apply them.

    JUST REMEMBER:

    • A code or standard is a framework—a set of rules to follow with a goal to achieve a certain result
    • A handbook is a connector—linking requirements to application by helping you understand the reasoning behind a code or standard

    The simplest way to think about it is that codes and standards list the technical requirements while handbooks explain those requirements to clarify how to apply them.

  • 2018 Description

    NFPA 3 is the first and only Standard with a complete commissioning program for fire protection and life safety systems.

    Updated, renamed, and approved as a Standard, NFPA 3, Standard for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems was originally developed in response to a request from the National Institute of Building Science (NIBS). It serves a critical need in the built environment by giving stakeholders a process for the commissioning of fire protection and life safety systems, to help them verify that systems are designed, installed, and function as intended.

    NFPA 3 works with NFPA 4, Standard for Integrated Fire Protection and Life Safety System Testing.

    NFPA 3 covers the complete commissioning process for system operation throughout the building's life cycle. It is adaptable for all types of systems -- fire protection suppression and control, fire alarm, emergency communications, smoke control, power, fire doors, commercial cooking operations, elevators, and more. NFPA 3 presents:

    • Qualifications of commissioning team members, such as job titles
    • Thirteen categories for a commissioning team appropriate to the project size and scope
    • Direction for commissioning of existing buildings to verify system performance and interconnectivity
    • Forms and reports that provide a baseline for documentation

    Numerous updates throughout the 2018 edition were made to reflect the transition from recommendations to mandatory requirements. Many chapter requirements were reorganized and moved to other chapters to make the Standard more useable.

    Compliance helps stakeholders ensure commissioning is done correctly, in every building regardless of age and designated use.

    Have documented confirmation at your fingertips that the fire protection and life safety systems installed in your facility function according to the intended design criteria set forth in project documents and satisfy the owner's operational needs as well as jurisdictional requirements. NFPA 3 benefits everyone responsible for the building's construction and management, and for meeting the needs of the owner's project requirements. (Print, 60 pp., 2018)

  • Prior Editions

    2015 Edition

    Update to the 2015 NFPA 3 -- the only complete commissioning program for fire protection and life safety systems.

    Developed in response to a request from the National Institute of Building Science (NIBS), landmark NFPA 3: Recommended Practice for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems outlines a process for the commissioning of interconnected safety systems, to help stakeholders verify that systems are designed, installed, and function as intended.

    NFPA 3 now works with NFPA 4: Standard for Integrated Fire Protection and Life Safety System Testing.

    The second edition of NFPA 3 covers the complete commissioning process for system operation throughout the building's life cycle. Guidelines for an Integrated Testing Plan and the role of the Integrated Testing Agent (ITa), formerly located in Chapter 7, have been extracted and expanded into the all new NFPA 4: Integrated Fire Protection and Life Safety System Testing.

    Other changes in NFPA 3 clarify commissioning procedures, methods, and documentation for architects, designers, contractors, owners, and AHJs.

    Adaptable for all types of systems -- fire protection suppression and control, fire alarm, emergency communications, smoke control, power, fire doors, commercial cooking operations, elevators, and more -- NFPA 3 spells out:

    • Qualifications of commissioning team members, such as job titles
    • Thirteen categories for a commissioning team appropriate to the project size and scope
    • Direction for commissioning of existing buildings to verify system performance and interconnectivity
    • Forms and reports that provide a baseline for documentation

    Make sure integrated systems are able to function as designed.

    NFPA 3 benefits everyone responsible for the building's construction and management, and for meeting the needs of the owner's project requirements. It helps stakeholders ensure commissioning is done correctly, in every building regardless of age and designated use. (Softbound, 54 pp., 2015)

     

    Interested in other editions of NFPA 3? Use the drop down menu above to select the edition year you need.

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  • Also in NFPA 3: Standard for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems