The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022 will make it a legal requirement from 23 January 2023 for responsible persons for all multi-occupied residential buildings in England with storeys over 11 metres in height to:
undertake quarterly checks of all fire doors (including self-closing devices) in the common parts
undertake – on a best endeavour basis – annual checks of all flat entrance doors (including self-closing devices) that lead onto a building’s common parts.
The regulations will also require responsible persons to provide to residents of all multi-occupied residential buildings with two or more sets of domestic premises (that have common parts) information on the importance of fire doors to a building’s fire safety.
What Is A Fire Door?
The first step in understanding what makes a fire door a fire door is knowing why it is called so to start with. So, why?
For a door to be a fire door, it must limit the spread of fire within a building. During emergencies, these doors provide time (from a minimum of 30 minutes) for people to find safety.
So put simply, a fire door is a fire-resistant, safety utility designed to prevent the spread of fire within a building long enough to save lives and crucial properties/documents.
That said, let’s see why fire doors are different. More importantly, let’s help you identify one.
How To Tell If A Door Is A Fire Door?
Unlike typical internal doors, fire doors are not strictly wooden, glass or metallic. And while their frames are usually solid timber, other parts are a combination of different materials.
For specifics, fire safety doors are often designed with materials such as aluminium, glass, gypsum, timber, and sometimes steel.
As a result of the different components, safety fire doors are sturdier than other internal doors. And often, that results in weight differences.
For example, an average internal door weighs about 45kg. Funnily enough, that is the weight of an FD30 (the least fire-resistance rating) fire door.
On the other hand,
FD60 (the medium size) can weigh up to 75kg!
Note: FD30 and FD60 are fire-resistance ratings; the former means a fire door will resist fire for 30 minutes, and the latter is 60 minutes.