Fire doors are a key aspect of workplace safety, but they’re of no use if they aren’t installed properly. Effective fire doors will limit the spread of a blaze in an unfortunate event, but with aged material or gaps in the frame, then you’ve got much less time to evacuate your building safely. In addition, as an employer, investing in fire safety is your legal responsibility, so you want to be confident that you’re doing everything in your power to protect your workforce!
With all of this in mind, how often should fire doors be checked? What are the legal requirements for a fire door, and why are they so important? At London Fire Solutions, we have all the answers you could need.
What Is A Fire Door Inspection?
A fire door inspection is just as crucial as checking your smoke alarms regarding fire safety! Simply put, a fire door inspection is an assessment of the state of your fire doors - including the material they’re made from, the sturdiness of the handles and the structure of the frame. But, of course, anybody performing your inspection needs to be competent in recognising faults, so it’s wise to employ a professional when the check comes.
Are Fire Door Inspections Legally Necessary?
Under the Regulatory Reform Fire Safety Order 2005, fire doors need to be inspected and maintained annually at the very least. Depending on the type of building, the person responsible for managing the property can determine how often fire safety inspections feel appropriate. In areas with heavy traffic, such as hospitals and colleges, monthly checks are more sensible. Working fire doors are a legal requirement in any non-domestic property and play an enormous role in fire stopping.
How Often Should My Fire Doors Be Checked?
Informally, you can check your fire doors as often as you’d like. You’d far rather be too cautious than not sensible enough so that a quick monthly assessment could save you a lot of upset in an emergency. Professionally, a fire door inspection should take place every six months for good practice.
As mentioned previously, once a year is the legal requirement, but a lot can change in those twelve months. In addition, external fire doors can be subject to harsh weather conditions, like snow in the winter or severe and baking heat in the summer, so you ought to check the state of the doors in both seasons.
What Am I Looking For In My Inspections?
With any of your surveys, even your informal monthly checks, you need to keep an eye out for:
- Missing fire or smoke seals
- Incorrect signage
- Unsuitable hinges
- Any damage to the door that could be detrimental to its durability.
Fire door seals are low in cost and only take minutes to install, so they’re worth monitoring yourself. However, incorrect signage is easily rectified, and unsuitable hinges shouldn’t be an issue if you’ve installed your fire doors professionally!
If you note any damage, you must get your fire doors professionally serviced and repaired. You will not be able to correctly assess the severity of the damage purely from observing it, and it isn’t worth the risk!
Who Do I Call For Fire Door Checks?
Any local fire safety company will likely be able to accommodate a fire door check and even assess your smoke alarm system for faults while they’re on site. In addition, they’ll be extensively trained in fire safety and much more confident and competent at spotting defects.
At London Fire Solutions, we assess, service and install fire doors from our base in London for clients all around the UK. Contact us to find out more regarding how we can help you and your workplace with fire safety.