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Fire Doors & Accessories FAQs

How thick are your fire doors?

The thickness of our fire doors depends on the fire rating: 

Our 30-minute fire doors  (FD30) are 44mm thick, and our 60-minute fire doors (FD60) are 54mm

How long do fire doors last?

There are no set rules that detail how long a fire door lasts before it needs to be replaced. The condition of the door should be monitored and checked at least every 6 months to ensure it is in good working order. Fire doors should comply with the latest fire door regulations, so it is important to keep up to date with any changes in regulations which may mean your doors are no longer fit for purpose.

How much can be removed from each edge of a fire door?

The amount that can be removed from the edges of a fire door differs from one door to the next and depends on several factors, including the exact materials used during construction and guidelines from the fire rating certificate. Accurate trimming information can only be provided by the manufacturer; on a case-by-case basis after the door has been completed. We recommend that you use a qualified fire door installer to ensure compliance. 

Are your doors suitable for pocket or sliding door systems?

Our fire doors are not certified for use within pocket or sliding door systems and the glazing and panels we provide is fitted using raised beading

How do you calculate the weight of a fire door?

In order to calculate the weight of a fire door you will need to know the weight per square meter (kg/m2) of the doors core. This is determined using the thickness of the door as follows:

  • 44mm = 55kg/m2
  • 54mm = 75kg/m2

The calculation below can be used to determine the approximate weight of the fire door. Please note that the calculation does not take glass weight into account.

Width X height X thickness X kg/m2 of the door's core = Weight of fire door.

For example for a door that was 926x2040mm with a thickness of 44mm the following calculation would give an approximate weight:

0.926 X 2.040 X 0.44 X 55 = 45 KG

Do you also supply and fit ironmongery on the doors you supply?

We supply a full range of ironmongery and fire-rated door accessories for fire doors, including door hinges, door closers and door holders. We can fit ironmongery purchased from us alongside the purchase of a fire door if you select fire door installation when ordering your fire door.

Please note: Some fire door retainers, such as Dorgard, require additional installation, information on this is in the checkout for you. 

I am a disabled person and struggle to open the heavy fire doors in my home. Do you have a product that can legally hold them open and automatically close them when a fire is detected?

The Dorgard will hold the fire door open and release it when the fire alarm sounds. Alternatively, fitting a free-swing door closer will allow your fire door to function as if it didn't have a door closer fitted, swinging freely as any normal door. On the fire alarm going off, free-swing door closers automatically close the fire door.

Can I buy a replacement glass tube for my panic bolt?

Yes, you can buy replacement glass tubes for Redlam and Ashworth Panic Bolts. Alternatively, Ceramtubes™ are suitable as a replacement for Redlam Panic Bolts. 

How often do I need to replace my fire door?

There are no set rules about how long a fire door lasts before it needs replacing. The condition of each fire door should be monitored and checked at least every 6 months to ensure it is in good working order.

Fire doors should comply with the latest fire door regulations, so it is important to keep up to date with any changes in these regulations that may mean your doors are no longer fit for purpose. Having a fire door inspection carried out by a qualified person can give you peace of mind.

What is the minimum power size for a door closer fitted to a fire door?

Power Size EN3 is the minimum closer strength required for any fire doors that must be fitted with an automatic closing device, as per recommendations in BS EN 1154.

EN1 and EN2 are defined in the Standard, but are only recommended for use on non-fire doors and are not actually suitable for use on fire doors. This is because fire door leaves are denser and heavier than non-fire doors, they are fitted with seals around the door edges which may cause resistance when closing, and it is critical that they are fully closed to prevent the spread of fire and smoke. Fire door closers therefore need to apply more force to fully close the door.

BS EN 1154 is the harmonised British-European Standard which covers performance and test methodology for door-closing devices, not limited to those intended for use on fire doors. EN Power Sizes are a classification system for door closers, where each power size corresponds to a range of door widths and weights that the closer is suitable for to ensure the door is fully closed. They range from EN1 (maximum door leaf width of 750mm and weight of 20kg) to EN7 (maximum width of 1600mm and weight of 160kg). Power Size EN3 supports doors up to 950mm wide and weighing up to 60kg.

Can you make alterations or drill holes in a fire door?

Yes, in some cases you can make alterations to your fire door, however, these alterations can only be done if they remain within the scope of the fire door's Certifire Approval documents. For example when a fire-rated door viewer or intumescent letterbox / letter plate is required. This information should also be detailed in the installation and maintenance instructions supplied with each door leaf.

It is critical that any changes made to a fire door are done so following the manufacturer’s instructions, by a trained professional, and with certified hardware to ensure that the performance of the door, and its associated certification, is not compromised.

BWF-Certifire has created a guide on how to ensure you retain your Fire Door Certification when considering making alterations.

Is there a way of securing a fire exit while still allowing access from the outside and ensuring the door cannot be left unlocked?

The best way to secure a fire exit and allow access from the outside while ensuring the door cannot be left open is by using an external code lock. The user can unlock the door using a 4-10 digit code, but once the door is closed, it will automatically be locked again. The door could also be fitted with a door closer to ensure it closes itself once it has been opened.

Are intumescent strips required on fire doors?

Yes, intumescent fire seals are required on all fire doors. Newer doors and frames have a channel cut into them for rebated seals (if not supplied with seals already in place). For older doors, surface-mounted seals can be used instead.

Please note: some of our seals have brushes on them, which are designed to block the spread of smoke around the door before ambient heat has caused the intumescent seals to expand and fill any gaps – these are usually required on doors, so make sure a competent person has performed the appropriate fire risk assessments or fire door inspections before purchasing.

What are closing force ratings for fire door closers?

The closing force rating of fire door closers, also called "power size", relates to the maximum width and weight of fire doors that the door closer can reliably close and hold closed.

Which rooms need fire doors?

Fire doors must be used in walls which form the compartmentation of the premises – specific areas within the building that are constructed to be fire-resistant. These may be individual rooms, but could also contain multiple rooms or might be vertical risers and lift shafts. Fire-rated doors are not required for walls not part of a compartment boundary.

Additional fire doors can be installed in place of normal doors, but they would provide minimal protection as the walls around them may not be constructed of especially fire-resistant materials and could burn through while the fire door remains intact. There is a risk of occupants gaining a false sense of security if fire doors are installed in non-compartment walls, so this should only be done under the guidance of a proper fire risk assessment conducted by a competent person.

Please consult the original building plans, if available, to determine where your premises' fire compartments are, or otherwise have a competent person perform a fire risk assessment or fire door inspection.

Can I update existing fire doors that have no seals to conform to regulations?

Yes, you can use the surfac- mounted fire and smoke seal kits, available for single and double doors.

The single door kit can be fitted to either the door or the door frame.

The double door kit should be fitted to the doors rather than the door frame so the gap between the doors is covered.

Please note: Surface-mounted fire door seals must be used in conjunction with certified fire doors and fire door equipment. They cannot turn a standard door into a fire door.

Can fire door seals be fitted to the door instead of the frame?

Yes, fire door seals can be fitted to either the door or the frame for a single fire door.

Double doors or door and a half fire doors will need to have fire door seals fitted to the door to ensure that the gap between each leaf is taken into consideration.

Can remote sounders be fitted to a fire door that requires monitoring?

Yes, the Exit Stopper can have remote sounders linked to it using a cable to connect the two. There is no distance restriction to this.

Can a fire door be fitted with self-closing hinges?

Whilst it is possible to fit self-closing hinges to a fire door, Safelincs does not recommend their use as they slam the door quickly. Fitting a fire door closer will allow you to adjust the closing speed and the latching action.

Which fire door do I need?

To find out which fire door you need, the Responsible Person in any business or organisation should carry out a risk assessment. This will determine where fire doors are required and what fire rating they should have.

In domestic properties, check the Building Regulations for guidance on where to fit fire doors in new-builds or renovations.

How big can the gap between door and frame of a fire door be?

Usually, there is a gap allowance between 2 and 4mm on the top and sides of a fire door, with the door threshold (gap under the door) between 8 and 10mm. 

It is advisable to check your core certification to check the gap allowance of your fire door. 

What is a fire door?

A fire door is a specially designed door with a fire-resistant rating to prevent the spread of fire. Fire doors form part of a passive fire protection system within a building to reduce the spread of fire and smoke. A fire door is made up of a door leaf, door frame, fixtures and fittings. Read our fire door buying guide for more information.

How do you stop fire doors slamming shut?

To stop your fire door from slamming shut you will need to adjust the closing speed or check the power size of the fire door closer fitted to the fire door. Regulations state that fire doors should self-close completely and reliably. They do not however need to bang or slam shut.

Many self-closing devices can be adjusted so that the door will close correctly without slamming. Other issues including a loss of fluid or improper fitting could be causing the issue. It is also possible to fit self-closing devices with a latching action which close the door quickly at first and then stop it from slamming by closing the last few inches slowly. It is advisable to have your fire door closer maintained and adjusted by a competent person.

Can I wedge my fire door open?

Fire doors should never be propped or wedged open as the fire door would not be able to close in the event of a fire. A safe and legal solution to holding open fire doors is to install a fire door holder also known as a retainer. Fire door retainers can be easily installed onto existing doors and allow the door to be held open at any angle. They comply with regulations because when the fire alarm sounds, the door retainer releases the fire door to close, preventing the spread of fire. Fire doors should never be propped or wedged open to improve ventilation.

Can I cut the bottom of my fire door to increase air circulation?

Cutting the bottom of a fire door could threaten the integrity of your fire door and could put lives at risk. If you need to increase air circulation in your building the best option is to hold your fire door open with a fire door holder or free-swing door closer. These are legal solutions that enable a fire door to be left open but will activate the automatic closing of the fire door on the sounding of fire alarm, preventing the spread of smoke and fire.

Why are fire doors heavy?

Fire doors are typically thicker than standard doors and doors with a solid construction will be particularly heavy. The self-closing device and the force with which the door closes can also make a fire door appear heavy and cumbersome. A free-swing closer can alleviate this issue, allowing the door to swing freely on its hinges as a standard door would. Free-swing door closers ‘take the weight’ out of fire doors in usual operation but will automatically close the door when the fire alarm sounds. This means they are a safe and legal solution to the problem of heavy fire doors.

Which fire doors require smoke seals?

Typically fire doors protecting escape routes may be required to have smoke seals to control the spread of smoke.Your risk assessment should detail which fire doors are required to have smoke brushes in addition to a standard intumescent fire door seal. Any door requiring a smoke seal will be listed with an ‘S’ following the rating. For example FD30s. 

Who can install a fire door?

Fire doors must be installed by a trained and competent person such as a qualified fire door installer.

How many hinges do you use to install a fire door?

Most fire doors require 3 fire-rated hinges to fix the door leaf to the frame. The hinges should feature a CE mark and fire identification stamp. Occasionally, depending on the weight of the fire door, more hinges may be specified by the manufacturer.

Do I need to use special paint on fire doors?

No, special paint is not required on fire doors. Regular decorative paint or varnish can be used without affecting the performance of the fire door. Care should be taken not to paint over the seals or hardware such as hinges.


(doc:537 V1.0). Our articles are reviewed regularly. However, any changes made to standards or legislation following the review date will not have been considered. Please note that we provide abridged, easy-to-understand guidance. To make detailed decisions about your fire safety provisions, you might require further advice or need to consult the full standards and legislation.


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