Fire doors are designed to be installed in a firewall where the fire-rated integrity of the wall has been interrupted by an opening that allows the passage of people and goods through that wall, unlike an exit door, which may not require any fire-rating but allows passage of people or goods.
As a fire service business, Survival Solutions regularly checks the operational status of fire doors and often find them non-compliant.
The obvious question by customers is why was the fire-door OK when it was installed, and last time it was checked, and now it’s failed compliance. Fire-doors are installed for many different reasons, but the three most common ones are fire separation of different classes within the same building, for example:
• A residential class 2 (sole occupancy units and common area), being separated from a residential class 7 (carpark).
• Fire separation of an individual building where two smaller compartments will negate the need for a sprinkler system.
• Where there is an external wall that is too close to the adjoining boundary, regardless if there is a dwelling there.
Now the question was why my fire door had been assessed as non-compliant.
Well, doors can expand and contract with variations in weather and environmental pressure, which over time can cause doors to change shape, exceeding gap tolerance, which is three millimetres from the frame at the sides and top and ten milimetres from the floor. External doors can also be exposed to rain and water getting into the panelling, causing the timber to rot and separate from the fire door material.
And the other thing is that people sometimes inadvertently install non-compliant door hardware, such as deadlock and peepholes, that impact the fire-rated integrity of the door or inhibit it from closing automatically in some circumstances. Most of these issues are minor fixes but, at times, require a complete door replacement.
If you have a need for any door repairs or replacement, Survival Solutions has a team of qualified and experienced fire door carpenters, ready to assist you or your customers.