Why Invest in Fire Rated Doors?

The benefits of fire rated doors

In England the fire and rescue service attended 156, 128 fires during the twelve-month period from June 2019 to June 2020 and there were 231 fatalities caused by fire during that same time frame. These shocking figures show how important it is that we do everything we can to stop fires from happening and control the spread of them if they do. Fire rated doors are one strong component playing a part in stopping fires rapidly moving through buildings. Find out exactly what a fire rated door is, how they work and why you need one…

What is a fire rated door?

A fire rated door, also known as a fire resistant door, is a door designed to stop the spread of both fire and smoke through a building. To put it bluntly fire rated doors are installed to save lives. These doors are given a rating depending on how long they can control the spread of fire and smoke which ranges between 30 to 120 minutes, for example a door that controls the spread for 30 minutes is a FD30. This rating is given based on fire tests in controlled settings and does not guarantee the door will hold back fire for that long. In a real life application many interfering factors may slightly alter the door’s performance.

How do they work?

All fire doors are constructed differently, but generally have a solid core. They are thicker than a normal door with a FD30 measuring about 45mm and a regular door about 35-40mm.

A fire door must be installed by a professional fitter from an industrial security doors company to work effectively – as a badly fitted door simply won’t work. One of the key features of a successful fire door is the intumescent strips which expand to fill the gap between the door and the door frame as a reaction to heat.

Fire rated doors slow the spread of both fire and smoke through a property. This gives people more time to escape and also holds back the fire to provide a safe escape route and enough time for people to exit the building.

Who are they aimed at and why do you need them?

Fire rated doors are commonplace in commercial and public buildings but are also suitable for residential properties too. In fact, it is stated in building regulations in England that a two storey building that has an integral garage leading into the house is required to have a fire rated door separating the two and any new or renovated buildings with three or more storeys (including loft conversions) must have fire doors to every room leading off the stairwell. Other than that it is recommended that residential properties install fire doors on rooms that present higher risks such as kitchens, rooms with fireplaces and those that contain many electrical items. Some people will also install these doors on rooms that contain valuable belongings to attempt to stop fire getting in.

Fire rated doors provide massive benefits in terms on increasing safety and reducing risk in the event of a fire. They can also give you peace of mind on a daily basis.