Smoke inhalation can potentially cause a significant number of fatalities during a fire breakout. Smoke can overcome and incapacitate occupants, preventing their timely escape from the building.

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order – 2005 places the responsibility of fire prevention on a ‘responsible person’ within the building; this means the responsible person has to ensure that life-saving, fire prevention assets such as fire doors are properly maintained and able to perform should a fire break out.

Here are four door checks that will ensure your fire doors will perform in the event of a building fire.

1. Controlling door gaps

Gaps between fire doors and the door frame should never be more than 4mm or less than 2mm. Aim for a 3mm gap to ensure adequate room for the intumescent strips to activate in the event of a fire as well as prevent damage to smoke seal strips (if installed) by the opening and closing of the door.

Top Tip: If you have an Acrovyn Swatch on your desk, use two Acrovyn sheets to check the size of the gap. A standard Acrovyn sheet is 2mm; if you can get any more than two sheets of Acrovyn in the door gap, it’s too big, and if you can’t fit one in at all, it’s too small.

2. Ensure the smoke seal closes the gaps

If smoke seals are installed, it’s important to make sure the smoke seals close the gaps in the door. Remember, smoke will squeeze through any gap, no matter how small.

3. Ensure there are only limited amounts of unprotected region around the door

Smoke can squeeze through any gap, no matter how small; it’s therefore imperative to ensure there are no gaps in intumescent and smoke seal protection. A fire door failure can be caused by the smallest defect. Look out for breaks in intumescent, especially on the hinge side.

4. Make sure the door closer can close the door against the seal

Fire doors are often used on a daily basis. Constant use can lead to fire doors deteriorating quicker, so it’s important to check the most active doors at more frequent intervals. For instance, a door may have dropped, or become warped from being held open for long periods, resulting in the door not closing properly. Double doors are particularly susceptible to this problem. If the door doesn’t close properly, it won’t perform in the event of a fire. Rectify the problem the moment it’s noticed.

Introducing CS Acrovyn fire doors

CS Acrovyn fire doors are classified as Severe Duty (Class 4) by the BS EN 1192:2000 ‘Doors – Classification of strength requirements’ procedure, which means the assurance of a longer lifespan and reduced maintenance requirement. These doors also come with extensive fire test evidence and third party certification to prove their performance.

CS Acrovyn doors are designed to stand up to extensive daily wear and tear and are used in a wide range of applications including healthcare, education, leisure and transport environments.

Featuring the tried and tested Acrovyn impact resistant covering for increased performance and extended lifecycle, CS Acrovyn fire doors are available in a wide range of colours, configurations and designs to satisfy operational, performance and aesthetic requirements.

CS Acrovyn fire doors are available from Construction Specialties - CS.

Image: Make sure the door closer can close the door against the seal