Appendix B Fire doors

1. All fire doors should have the appropriate performance given in Table B1 either:

a. By their performance under test to BS 476 Fire tests on building materials and structures, Part 22 Methods for determination of the fire resistance of non-loadbearing elements of construction, in terms of integrity for a period of minutes, e.g. FD30. A suffix (S) is added for doors where restricted smoke leakage at ambient temperatures is needed; or

b. As determined with reference to Commission Decision 2000/367/EC of 3rd May 2000 implementing Council Directive 89/106/EEC as regards the classification of the resistance to fire performance of construction products, construction works and parts thereof. All fire doors should be classified in accordance with BS EN 13501-2:xxxx, Fire classification of construction products and building elements. Classification using data from fire resistance tests (excluding products for use in ventilation systems). They are tested to the relevant European method from the following:

• BS EN 1634-1:2000, Fire resistance tests for door and shutter assemblies. Fire doors and shutters;

• BS EN 1634-2:xxxx Fire resistance tests for door and shutter assemblies. Fire door hardware;

• BS EN 1634-3:2001 Fire resistance tests for door and shutter assemblies. Smoke control doors.

The performance requirement is in terms of integrity (E) for a period of minutes.

An additional classification of Sa is used for all doors where restricted smoke leakage at ambient temperatures is needed.

The requirement (in either case) is for test exposure from each side of the door separately, except in the case of lift doors which are tested from the landing side only.

Any test evidence used to substantiate the fire resistance rating of a door or shutter should be carefully checked to ensure that it adequately demonstrates compliance and is applicable to the complete installed assembly. Small differences in detail (such as glazing apertures, intumescent strips, door frames and ironmongery etc) may significantly affect the rating.

Note 1: The designation of xxxx is used for standards that are not yet published. The latest version of any standard may be used provided that it continues to address the relevant requirements of the Regulations.

Note 2: Until such time that the relevant harmonised product standards are published, for the purposes of meeting the Building Regulations, products tested in accordance with BS EN 1634-1 (with or without pre-fire test mechanical conditioning) will be deemed to have satisfied the provisions provided that they achieve the minimum fire resistance in terms of integrity, as detailed in Table B1.

2. All fire doors should be fitted with a self-closing device except for fire doors to cupboards and to service ducts which are normally kept locked shut and fire doors within flats (self-closing devices are still necessary on flat entrance doors).

Note: All rolling shutters should be capable of being opened and closed manually for firefighting purposes (see Section 17, paragraph 17.15).

3. Where a self-closing device would be considered a hindrance to the normal approved use of the building, self-closing fire doors may be held open by:

a. a fusible link (but not if the door is fitted in an opening provided as a means of escape unless it complies with paragraph 4 below); or

b. an automatic release mechanism actuated by an automatic fire detection and alarm system; or

c. a door closer delay device.

4. Two fire doors may be fitted in the same opening so that the total fire resistance is the sum of their individual fire resistances, provided that each door is capable of closing the opening. In such a case, if the opening is provided as a means of escape, both doors should be self-closing, but one of them may be fitted with an automatic self-closing device and be held open by a fusible link if the other door iscapable of being easily opened by hand and has at least 30 minutes fire resistance.

5. Because fire doors often do not provide any significant insulation, there should be some limitation on the proportion of doorway openings in compartment walls. Therefore no more than 25% of the length of a compartment wall should

consist of door openings, unless the doors provide both integrity and insulation to the appropriate level (see Appendix A, Table A2).

Note: Where it is practicable to maintain a clear space on both sides of the doorway, then the above percentage may be greater.

6. Roller shutters across a means of escape should only be released by a heat sensor, such as a fusible link or electric heat detector, in the immediate vicinity of the door. Closure of shutters in such locations should not be initiated by smoke detectors or a fire alarm system, unless the shutter is also intended to partially descend to form part of a boundary to a smoke reservoir.

7. Unless shown to be satisfactory when tested as part of a fire door assembly, the essential components of any hinge on which a fire door is hung should be made entirely from materials having a melting point of at least 800ºC.

8. Except for doors identified in paragraph 9 below, all fire doors should be marked with the appropriate fire safety sign complying with BS 5499-5:2002 according to whether the door is:

a. to be kept closed when not in use (Fire door keep shut);

b. to be kept locked when not in use (Fire door keep locked shut); or

c. held open by an automatic release mechanism or free swing device (Automatic fire door keep clear).

Fire doors to cupboards and to service ducts should be marked on the outside; all other fire doors on both sides.

9. The following fire doors are not required to comply with paragraph 8 above:

a. doors to and within flats;

b. bedroom doors in ‘Other-residential’ premises; and

c. lift entrance/landing doors.

10. Tables A1 and A2 set out the minimum periods of fire resistance for the elements of structure to which performance of some doors is linked. Table A4 sets out limitations on the use of uninsulated glazing in fire doors.

11. BS 8214:1990 gives recommendations for the specification, design, construction, installation and maintenance of fire doors constructed with non-metallic door leaves.

Guidance on timber fire-resisting doorsets, in relation to the new European test standard, may be found in Timber Fire-Resisting Doorsets: maintaining performance under the new European test standard published by TRADA.

Guidance for metal doors is given in Code of practice for fire-resisting metal doorsets published by the DSMA (Door and Shutter Manufacturers’ Association) in 1999.

12. Hardware used on fire doors can significantly affect performance in fire.

Notwithstanding the guidance in this Approved Document, guidance is available in Hardware for fire and escape doors published by the Builders Hardware Industry Federation and Guild of Architectural Ironmongers.

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