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Old 07-20-2008, 07:35 PM   #1
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Firerating an apartment over a garage


OK, I'm building a 1200 sq ft apt. over a two car garage. The stairs to the apt. are inside the garage. There are no codes above the National. I believe I have to double 5/8 rock the ceiling of the garage. The big ? is do I need to seperate the stairs from the garage with a partition wall, or can I put in a fire rated door to the apt. on the second floor? Thanks in advance!


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Old 07-20-2008, 08:28 PM   #2
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Firerating an apartment over a garage


2 locations for egress min. per codes/// you might want to add a chain and metal rung ladder under the bedroom window ( just in case some body you like is living there.) Use surface mounted lighting in garage ceiling ( all penetrations need to be tight). double rock the pipe chase & Yes FR 5/8 Rock and door. Don't forget to contact yor insurance agent and get the proper coverage.

Now lets hope the rent is on time. Good luck

Do the stairs need partition FR wall? ( if you have a FR door) per code ? Hmmm. I would say yes, but I like to see everybody safe.


Last edited by Big Bob; 07-20-2008 at 08:37 PM.
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Old 07-21-2008, 04:21 AM   #3
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Firerating an apartment over a garage


Thanks Bob, I appreciate the input.
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Old 07-21-2008, 09:15 PM   #4
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Firerating an apartment over a garage


You would need to protect your stairs from the garage in my opinion. Garages cannot be used for egress, or at least can't be counted as a required means of egress from a dwelling unit. So, a 20 minute assembly (1/2" rock will get you 20 minutes) would be needed to completely isolate the stairs and exit door from the garage. If you have to go into the garage to get to the stairs, it won't fly for egress, but still must be a 20 minute protected assembly. You'll need to rock the underside of the stairs if accessible.

As for the ceiling, one layer of 5/8" will get you legal. Also, you have to protect all structural elements that support the dwelling unit. That will include any beams, beam posts, stud walls, etc. Basically, the entire garage must be sheetrocked to provide the 20 minute membrane.

Your second method of egress would be the required egress window (or door and stairs) from the sleeping areas. Each sleeping area must have compliant egress.
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