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by Luke Hayes on 29th November 2021

Fire doors are an essential part of managing fire risks in commercial and residential properties. They are one of the most important safety devices in a fire as they give occupants time to safely evacuate and for emergency personnel to arrive. Fire doors are designed to withstand fire anywhere between 30 and 240 minutes. With fire doors being a key part of the safety and passive fire protection of your building it’s important to know the relevant building safety regulations when installing fire doors.

What are Fire Doors?

Fire doors are doors that have been designed to withstand a fire for a specific period of time. They are typically rated for 30 or 60 minutes to allow people to safely evacuate a building. However, there are higher ratings, up to 240 minutes, which are primarily designed to preserve property that can’t be removed from the building during a fire, such as computing equipment or file storage.

Fire doors consist of more than just the door and includes the framing, glazing, intumescent and smoke seals and all the ironmongery that is used on the door, such as hinges, overhead door closers, latches and locks on and around the door. They are important safety devices, designed to protect people and property from damage by breaking the progression of the fire throughout a building.

A fire door should be made by a BWF certified manufacturer and then checked by an accredited third party to verify that it can withstand fire up to what the manufacturer has specified.

Features of a Fire Door

An improperly made fire door won’t function properly as a safety device, materials, in particular have to be tested for compliance. Materials for the door include:

  • Timber
  • Glass (glazed in fire-resistant materials such as ceramic)
  • Aluminium
  • Steel
  • Gypsum

Used in the right ways, with properly tested ironmongery, these doors can withstand high temperatures. They should be CE Marked to show they’ve been compliance tested. 

The correct installation is essential for the door to work properly. The intumescent seal around the door is only effective at stopping smoke and heat when the gap around the door is 4mm or less. Fire doors should be equipped with a properly designed self-closing device which closes the door in the event of a fire. Propping open fire doors with door wedges or other methods renders them ineffective, making it dangerous to do so. This is why fire doors are clearly marked as “keep closed” on their signage.

Does your Fire Door meet Regulations?

In a study conducted by FDIS, 75% of fire doors were deemed as not fit for purpose. Fire doors can be a matter of life or death for the occupants within the building. It is important for property managers to make sure their fire doors meet regulations. 

So whether you need to install a new fire door or check if your existing fire door meets regulations our technicians at First Intervention Team can inspect your fire doors to guarantee that they will keep your occupants safe. Contact us through our website, or by calling 01375 676779 today. 

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