Fire emergency exit doors in an apartment building

5 Common Myths About Fire Doors

Fire doors are life-saving installations that stand like a shield between you and a fire. When an unprecedented blaze rages out of control, fire doors for apartments can help firemen in their rescue efforts and save the lives of those trapped. 

The importance of installing fire doors grows when living in densely populated urban areas where a blaze can engulf homes and end lives in a matter of seconds. With high daily footfall, it is also essential to have fire doors in offices and commercial buildings.

At Doorway Services, we endeavour to provide timely installation, repair and maintenance services for fire doors. We believe in expert intervention for the safety and security of your home, staff, building and business. 

While the importance of installing fire doors in houses and office spaces is clear, many common misconceptions about them continue to circulate like wildfire. Believing such myths and misconceptions can be costly or even fatal. More than ever, it is vital to brush up on your knowledge of fire safety and be completely prepared in the unexpected event of a fire. 

In this article, we list the 5 common myths about fire doors and reveal the truth behind the misconceptions.

What are Fire Doors?

Fire doors are specifically engineered and fitted to work like safety installations in case of a fire breakout. In the UK, the FD 30 is the most common fire door in houses, and when fitted by trusted fire door experts it can withstand up to thirty minutes of intense temperature from smoke and flames.

As a life-saving apparatus, fire doors are designed with great precision. They are equipped with strong materials like aluminium and steel and safety mechanisms to prevent contact with the blaze. Aluminium, with a melting point of 660 degrees Celsius, and steel, with a critical point of 530 degrees Celsius, are two reliable components of a fire door. 

Why are Fire Doors Important?

Fire doors are meticulously engineered as a fire safety apparatus to contain fire outbreaks, limit their spread, and provide safe evacuation routes. These doors come with intricate details such as self-closing mechanisms and intumescent seals to withstand the devastating effects of a blaze. 

In an uncontrolled building blaze, when time is of the essence to rescue those trapped, FD 30 fire doors in homes and residential properties withstand the blaze for up to 30 minutes, allowing more time for safety rescue operations. 

It is a legal requirement to install and maintain fire doors in offices and some apartment buildings, especially if you have a property with two or more storeys with stairwells or doors leading from the garage to the main house. Every fire door needs to have a fire door certificate listing all the mandatory specification items. 

5 Common Myths about Fire Doors

Let’s take a look at the common misconceptions about fire doors.

Myth 1 – Standard Doors with Flame-Proof Paint Can Be Called Fire Doors

This is false. Although flame-resistant paint can provide very limited protection against fire, a lick of paint alone cannot withstand the pressures of an intense blaze like a genuine fire door can. 

Importantly, the British Woodworking Foundation (BWF), the fire safety authority, does not recognise a regular door with flame-proof paint as a fire door; this needs to be made from specified components and fire-tested materials. Fire doors offer unmatched protection against fires, having stood the test of time. 

Myth 2 – The Gap between the Fire Door and the Frame Doesn’t Matter

This does matter; the dimension of the gap around the door’s perimeter is important in preventing the spreading of toxic fumes and smoke from a fire. This gap is about 3 mm (as thick as a 1-pound coin) in fire doors for apartments and commercial centres with smoke seals, but it is better to check the door’s certificate for specifications. One way to check the gap is to see if light can pass under the fire door. 

Myth 3 – As Metal Doesn’t Burn in a Fire, You Can Fit Any Metal Lock on the Fire Door

This is false; any metal becomes extremely hot during a fire, quickly becoming the weakest link without intumescent protection. 

Additionally, the lock needs to be fire tested and compatible with the norms listed on the fire door certificate in addition to requiring fire door certification from the BWF.  

Myth 4 – If Fire Doors in Houses and Apartments Are Too Big, You Can Trim Them Down to Size

You can only trim the door according to the amount permitted on the fire door certificate and the manufacturer’s fitting instructions. Remember that resizing fire doors beyond the set certificate limits can invalidate your fire door’s certification. 

For resizing fire doors for apartments or offices, it is best to trust our fire door experts at Doorway Services.

Myth 5 – You Can Fit Your Own Glazed Panels in Your Fire Doors

Manufacturing a fire door with a glazed panel needs specific components compatible with the door and according to the specifications mentioned on the fire door certificate. 

You can run the risk of invalidating your fire door certification by cutting door holes to insert vision panels. Instead, use our trained and licensed fire door experts at Doorway Services for this task.

Contact Doorway Services, Your Fire Door Experts for Installing Fire Doors

Fires can be deadly, but with the right knowledge and precautions in place, fatalities can be avoided. With this upgrade in knowledge on fire doors and fire safety, it’s time to prevent myths from spreading like wildfire and be better prepared for a disaster. If you are looking to install fire doors in offices or apartments, Doorway Services is here to assist as your fire door expert.

Our team is trained and experienced in installing, maintaining and repairing fire doors in line with fire safety norms and regulations. In addition to fire doors, we also install manual doors, dane shutters, automatic doors and automatic swing doors.

Learn more about us and our services by getting in touch with us.