Fire doors are one of the most significant fire safety features you’ll see in a building, acting as a physical barrier between fire and smoke, and those in the area. When installed, maintained and checked properly, fire doors can slow down the movement of fire and the damage it can cause.
Fire doors require regular inspection to ensure the integrity of them is intact, that they have not been vandalised or damaged and that they can perform as expected should a fire occur.
What does a fire door do?
A fire door is a specifically built piece of fire-fighting equipment, engineered to strict safety standards. When closed, such doors provide an important element of fire protection and compartmentalisation of escape routes, including stairs and corridors, protecting escape routes from the effects of fire so that occupants can reach a final exit point.
Fire doors act as passive protection in that they require no physical activation; they are effective fire resistant barriers without the need for external stimuli.
When placed at tactical locations in a building, fire doors act to divide a building into different sized compartments, also known as compartmentalisation. This decelerates the spread of fire and smoke to allow safe evacuation and reduces the risk to the rest of the building structure by containing the fire in that compartment, as well as providing valuable time for the fire rescue service to contain and put out the fire.
Who’s in charge of fire doors?
The Responsible Person is accountable for arranging the maintenance of fire doors. This person must ensure that regular checks of all fire doors takes place as stated in the BS9999: Fire safety in the design, management and use of buildings – Code of Practice, using a reputable company who are skilled in the importance of working with fire doors.
Learn more about the remit of the Responsible Person in our video guide.
Installing fire doors correctly
Standards and regulations relate to the whole of the door installation, not simply the door itself. This includes the frame, locks, latches, hinges, door closers and all other relevant ironmongery needed to comprise the list of components to class it as a fire door.
It’s important to note that fire doors must be tested independently to British or European Standards so that in the event of a fire, they perform as required.
Churches Fire works with many industries to ensure fire doors will be effective in the event of an emergency, providing servicing, maintenance and replacement with little disruption to the business day.
The Importance of Maintaining Fire Doors
After installation, fire doors should be inspected regularly (minimum of 6 monthly inspections) to ensure functionality and that they are always ready to perform. Fire doors should be treated the same way as other fire-fighting or detection equipment, receiving the same level of care and attention.
Alterations to the door or its surroundings, however small, can have a potentially critical impact on a fire door’s performance, therefore it is recommended that periodic checks are carried out. The frequency of these checks will depend upon the premises in question and how often people are using the doors.
Fire evacuation drills form part of a business fire safety plan. As part of this, consider checking the various routes out of the premises during these drills and the areas of the fire doors that are susceptible to damage.
Documenting fire door maintenance
A sufficiently documented system of regular maintenance to all elements of a fire doors is fundamental to the long-term fire safety of a building.
This work should be carried out on all parts of the door by a competent technician, from a company such as Churches Fire who are third-party accredited, meaning you can safe in the knowledge that all work carried out meets regulatory requirements and is fully competent.
It’s good practice to keep a maintenance log for these checks, assigning each fire door a reference number to allow for easy identification.
Well-maintained fire doors are essential in the protection of buildings, assets and people. They are a key requirement for every business and establishment to which the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 applies to.
Need some help?
If you would like to find out more about maintaining your fire doors and how Churches Fire can help you and your business, call our customer development team on 0370 608 4350 or complete the form for a call back:
If you require fire door maintenance or you would like more information on fire doors, please get in touch.Get in touch