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Is your door a fire door?

In a block of flats it’s the leaseholders responsibility to ensure they install fire doors in their flat, as required under The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRO).

The installation of fire doors must be conducted by a competent person and the Act defines such a person as one with the necessary expertise, qualifications, training and experience needed to implement fire safety measures in a block of flats.

A fire door can not contain glass panels

The Fire Safety Order (RRO) 2005 lays out the fire door regulations for all existing building structures with the exception of domestic single occupancy houses.

Older panel doors, especially if less then 44mm thick, are unlikely to be FD30 – the term used to say if a door can withstand a fire for 30 minutes. The door can, however, be upgraded or modified to achieve a fire resisting standard.

You might find certified panel fire doors with wood surfaces to fit into traditional homes but hollow flush doors using egg box or similar construction will not be FD30. This can be detected by the weight of the door because fire doors are much heavier than a hollow door. To check the weight of a door, instead of removing it, you can just detach the self-closer and swing the door between your thumb and index finger. This gives a good indication of the weight of the door. Hollow doors are reasonably easy to detect using this method.

Fire doors will also have automatic closing devices (fire door closers) fitted. Spring-loaded self-closing hinges and concealed Perko door closers with chains might also be in evidence.

Because of the weight of a fire door, and to prevent it warping during a fire, fire doors are usually fitted with three fire door hinges though in certain circumstances, two hinges are allowed.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a standard method of identifying whether your door is a fire door or not so if you have a door replaced it’s best to keep written evidence, such as a test certificate, to show that the door within your flat is a fire door.

If you need advice on fire safety regulations don’t hesitate to contact us at MCP.