3rd Mar 2023 -

A crucial safety element within modern buildings, internal fire doors stop the spread of fire for a set period, allowing those within the building to evacuate. Fire doors are a legal requirement within many commercial and shared buildings, and will need to be installed with the correct frames and ironmongery to meet certifications.

What Are Internal Fire Doors?

A fire door is intended to withstand heat, flames, and smoke, keeping fires contained within an area of a building. This forms an essential aspect of any fire safety plan within a building, allowing a clear window of time in which occupants can escape. Fire-rated doors are typically solid, with FD30 and FD60 models (offering 30 or 60 minutes of fire protection) usually made from wood.

Fire door manufacturers will need to submit their doors to rigorous independent testing to prove they can offer the protection needed to meet legal requirements.

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Where Are Fire Doors Used?

Internal fire doors are a legal necessity in most commercial buildings and many rented or shared domestic properties. The locations where fire doors must be installed will be decided based on a fire risk assessment, which is a professional survey of the property. This assessment will also make suggestions about whether FD30 or FD60 doors are required, with FD60 doors often suggested in larger buildings like tower blocks, while FD30 fire doors will be fine for most standard buildings.

In general, the principle of fire door placement will be around creating a safe escape route, with either horizontal escape routes leading to a safe area within a floor, or vertical escape routes leading to a stairwell and fire exit. Lining the escape route with fire doors will help to maintain its usability in the event of a fire.

Internal fire doors will also be used in blocks of flats, helping to bridge private and communal spaces. Within any building where fire doors are needed, a “Responsible Person” will be designated, whose job it is to ensure that a thorough risk assessment has been carried out, that all doors are correctly installed, and that they are properly maintained and checked. This person could be a site manager, a landlord, or a member of a tenant's organisation.

The current regulations only stipulate that a “competent person” should install fire doors, but as this is a crucial job it should only be undertaken by a professional. An incorrect installation could allow flames and smoke to easily pass around a door in the event of a fire.

Green emergency exit sign

Interior Fire Door Sizes

The size of internal doors can vary within the UK, with no real standard size. Within our own range of internal fire doors, heights range from 1981mm to 2040mm, widths range from 457mm to 926mm, and thicknesses vary between 35mm and 54mm. Because having as small a gap as possible around a fire door is crucial to its effectiveness, this range ensures that you can buy the precise size you need.

The Additional Elements of a Fire Door

While the door itself is an important element, it is just one part of a fire door system. To meet regulations, every element of an internal fire door will need to offer the same level of protection:

  • Frame: Alongside the door, the door frame will also need to be fire-resistant. Fire doors are often sold in their frames. 
  • Self-Closer: Fire doors are designed to be closed except when being used, and self-closers are a requirement to ensure that they can shut themselves. This self-closer will also need to be fire-resistant.
  • Hinges: The hinges hanging an internal fire door in place must be either FD30 or FD60 certified, to ensure that the door hangs in place during a fire.
  • Ironmongery: All handles and latches will need to offer fire resistance, as they could otherwise be a weak spot for smoke and flames to penetrate.
  • Intumescent Seals: An internal fire door will be surrounded by intumescent seals, which are designed to expand in the event of a fire, stopping the passage of smoke, often the deadliest element of a fire.
  • Glazed Panels: Internal fire doors are available with glazed panels, which will also need to offer the same level of protection. This can be a great option to meet safety regulations while still allowing light to move through a building, such as an office.
  • Signage: Fire doors will need to be indicated with a sign, typically “Fire door, keep clear”.

In order to comply with regulations, every aspect of an FD30 or FD60-rated door will need to meet these standards. For example, an FD60 door must be installed with FD60 hinges.

Internal Fire Door Designs

You’ll have a range of designs available when looking for internal fire doors, from modern flush styles to classical panelled looks. Opting for a glazed fire door can be a great way to ensure safety whilst maintaining visibility and light. Whether sourcing internal fire doors for an office, a block of flats, or a shop, the range of designs you expect from standard doors will all be available.

Regulation Internal Fire Doors Delivered Across the UK

Whether looking for replacement fire doors to help your building meet standards, or to fit out a new build project, our wide selection of internal fire doors offers the performance you need in a range of visual designs. Building Materials Nationwide aims to be the one-stop shop for professionals and DIYers, providing all the products and supplies you need from one easy location.

Those working in the industry will gain even more through our trade accounts, which pair you with a dedicated account manager. Your account manager will help to organise whatever you need through our network of suppliers, delivering it to you across the UK at a fantastic trade price. Sign up for a trade account today to start saving time and money.

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