Monday 24 October 2022

E. & S.W. Knowles Warns of Dangerous Delays in Fire Door Safety Checks

E. & S.W. Knowles – the Birmingham-based manufacturer of internal doors - is warning of backlogs to fire door maintenance and replacements that could be causing dangerous problems.

In 2020 it was revealed that at least 26,318 fire doors were scheduled for maintenance or replacement between January and June of that year, but 16,580 did not progress – meaning 63% of individual planned works were delayed until at least the second half of the year, affecting a minimum of 9,954 individual properties. 

It is thought that there is still a significant backlog in the system. 

This is dangerous, as fire doors play a critical role in protecting lives and preventing the passage of fire to other parts of a building or another building. 

To qualify as a fire door, a door must have a door leaf, frame/lining, intumescent seals, a latch or lock, hinges and frame/wall sealing. Other items that may be required include smoke seals, door closer, signage, other ironmongery, fire door glazing, threshold seals, and an air transfer grille. 

All the right components must be correctly fitted and maintained to ensure the door works properly in the event of a fire.  

As part of Fire Door Safety Week – an annual safety campaign – companies and organisations are urged to undertake a five-step safety check to ensure that: 
  • Certification is correct and up to date and all ironmongery is CE marked and compatible with door leaf certification
  • Apertures haven’t been altered for glazing or air transfer grilles (which can make certification void) 
  • The gap around the door is a constant 3 to 4 mm, with firmly fixed hinges and seals that are securely fitted at the tops and sides 
  • Door closers shut the door onto the latch from any position – this must be checked down to 75mm from the closed position
  • The door closes correctly around all parts of the frame
Steve Horner, Managing Director at E. & S.W. Knowles explains:
“Often fire doors are installed and then forgotten about, but – just like any piece of equipment – they need to be properly checked and maintained,”  
“It’s the responsibility of building owners, landlords and tenants to complete these checks on a regular basis. It doesn’t take long but could literally be the difference between life and death in the event of a fire”. 

E. & S.W. Knowles offers a wide range of standard internal fire doors, with bespoke options also available. 

All of them are fully tested and are third-party accredited under the IFC Certification and BM TRADA ‘Q’ Mark Fire Schemes, with fire protection ratings that range from 30 minutes (FD30) right up to 120 minutes (FD120). 

Accompanying timber doorsets mean that the buyer receives a compatible door, frame, hardware, seals and glass from one quality and trusted supplier. 

All doorsets are supplied as a complete package ready for installation and can be fully machine prepared for hardware, providing a precision fit that maximises performance and simplifies installation. 

All fire doors and timber doorsets in the E. & S.W. Knowles range comply with building regulations. 

To discover more about fire doors and timber doorsets from E. & S.W. Knowles, you can access an online brochure at 

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