This could save your life

Because this is a cross section of a Global FD30s Fire door and if you ever have the misfortune to be involved in a fire, a door of such construction could be the last barrier between you and the blaze that blaze on the other side and that could end up saving your life.

What is a fire door?

A fire door is one that has both been specially constructed and installed to resist the passage of flame and smoke, the FD30 is the most commonly used in domestic properties which when correctly installed by an experienced tradesman using the appropriate ironmongery and fittings– can withstand flames and smoke for up to 30 minutes. The Global FD30s fire door as shown in cut away section above meets all of the construction requirements because our doors comprise all of the following –

  • An inner door leaf which features a Kerto LVL (laminated veneer lumber) 480g/m3 core which is a highly engineered multi layered board which is clad each side with 2mm GRP decorative facing.
  • Intumescent strips which foam and swell in the event of fire, thus filling the gap between the door and frame preventing the flow of hot gases and smoke.
  • A choice of door closers – the traditional surface closer or the Powermatic concealed door closer.
  • Fire re-resistant glass features throughout the Fire door range, fire resistant glass is tested and approved according to BS 476: Part 22 for both integrity and insulation.

A Simple construction that could save your life – and we have all the accreditations to prove this statement –

The use of and positioning of Fire Doors in buildings is governed by the legal requirements as set out in the Building Regulations should you wish to check out all of the requirements applicable to fire doors they are available at – , the guidance note requires that a building is divided into compartments, protecting escape routes, such as corridors and staircases and that protection is to be provided by Fire Doors

All of the above are the very reasons why Fire doors should never be propped open and should be fitted with Door Closers (that work, have not been disconnected etc.)

We see the sign in every walk of life “Fire Door” normally with a warning about keeping it closed at all times and what do we do, we simply take it for granted – but fire doors are put in their respective positions for a purpose and that purpose is not to STOP fires it is a CONTAINMENT measure to prevent the spread of flames and smoke and allow as safe as possible an exit from the building.

And what of the installation – we covered this extensively in our recent blog The correct installation of Fire Doors – lets try and save him a job. we would recommend this blog as essential reading if you are considering a new fire door .

Fire doors are at this time a very emotive issue as shown by our mailbox and unfortunately as the Building Regulations controlling their use are difficult to interpret this has led to some very strange interpretations of that which is acceptable or required in the installation of a fire door – the following are questions /topics we have addressed over recent months.

  1. a) Replacement of internal doors is “a like for like” option – if you don’t already have fire doors in your home, standard doors are fine – but if you decide to change to fire doors for safety reasons you need to consider the following:

* FD30 fire doors are around 44mm thick, 10cm thicker than the average interior door, which may necessitate a change of frame.

* A fire door won’t work unless it’s fitted properly see “And what of installation above”

* Never prop them open and always close them securely when you are not using them for access

  1. b) Fire doors where are they required – they are essential in the following circumstances if you are undertaking the following renovations –

* If you have a door leading from a garage to the main house in a two-storey build.

* If you are building or renovating a home with three or more storeys (including loft conversions). In this case every room off the stairwells must have fire doors.

For further information refer to our blog “Do I need Fire doors in my property”

  1. c) The myth that painting a standard construction door with flame proof paint makes it a fire door is exactly that a myth – all testing authorities lay down pretty stringent standards as to what a fire door must comprise – a fire door is made up of many compatible and fire-tested materials and components, all listed on the fire door certificate and every genuine fire door will have such certification
  2. d) Who is responsible for the Fire Doors If you’re renting a property – it is not the tenant it is the landlord and /or the ‘responsible person’ under the Fire Safety Order, who has responsibility to ensure fire safety for the occupants of the building. If you are the landlord or responsible person and you do not have the knowledge or skills, you must appoint a ‘competent person’ to carry this out for you.
  3. e) The one we cannot stress enough do not have any obstructions in front of a fire door do not be one of the 74 per cent of tradespeople who as shown in a recent survey had blocked or obstructed afire door. Always remember to consider that it is you who is trying to escape and smoke and flames could prevent you from seeing clearly and a trip and a minor injury could be fatal
  4. f) The regularly asked question – my existing fire door has a significant gap between the door the frame does it matter – The answer is always a resounding yes it matters an uncontrolled gap – which generally means your door has been badly fitted could be critical if your door is ever put to the test of a fire. The dimension of the gap around the entire perimeter of the door is critical to preventing the passage of toxic fumes and smoke in the event of a fire. Recent research revealed 34 per cent of fire doors fitted had excessive gaps (over 3mm). On a fire door with smoke seals this gap is commonly 3mm – the same thickness as a £1 coin – but always check the fire door certificate. The gap under the door can be slightly larger (up to 8mm), but it does depend on the door. Ideally, you should not see light under the door.
  5. g) As all Fire doors are tested with the appropriate locks handles and closers the hardware is part of the fire certification in many instances the hinges and locks are bedded on or wrapped in intumescent material prior to installation. We would recommend the reading of our blog The correct installation of Fire Doors – lets try and save him a job. before commencing any installation
  6. h) If you have bought a cheap fire door and not checked its certification / accreditation it’s too late – chances are your fire door is not what it says it should be. Check before you buy – every fire door must have a current independently accredited test certificate. This proves the door’s fire rating, test criteria, and manufacturing compliance. It also shows that the door’s components meet strict performance and compliance standards. It also gives critical information about installation. Look for a label on top (or occasionally on the side) of the door. Without a certification mark, you cannot be sure this really is a fire door.

Any genuine Fire Door should carry a certificate like the one above showing that it has been tested and approved by an independent certifying testing laboratory who have been approved to carry out testing for conformity with regulations and who have the authority to issue such certification.

The latest fire door definitions include an “s” after the FD 30 i.e. FD30Swhich shows that not only does the door meet fire testing requirements it is compliant compliance smoke test requirements for up to 30 minutes (FD30s) in the case of Global Doors the smoke test is issued by Warrington Exova and independently assessed by Certifire (CF5324)

With the advent of the composite door the appearance of the typical FD30 fire door has changed dramatically, it is no longer a simple flush door that requires painting – it has evolved to become a door that comes in as many patterns as the composite front door comes in styles in the case of our Global doors there are sixteen of check them all out at   be safe only ever install or have guaranteed fire doors installed in your property.