How Often Should Fire Doors be Inspected?
Following fire door installation, people tend to enquire how often should fire doors be inspected. Current legislation requires an inspection at least every six months, but in some cases, it may be more frequent depending on the usage of the area.
Unlike many other passive fire protection elements, fire doors get a lot of use, making them susceptible to damage. The guidance on fire door maintenance applies regardless of building use, be it education, health or high-rise apartment blocks.
How Often do Fire Doors Need to be Inspected?
The Fire Safety Order 2005 means it is now a legal requirement to install and maintain all fire doors. Maintenance is a core responsibility for those with day-to-day control over premises, not the fire services.
Just how often should fire doors be inspected? As we’ve mentioned, once every six months is the minimum, but in certain situations, such as if doors are in high-use areas, you should check them more often, ideally weekly or monthly. You may also need more frequent inspections for buildings in their first year of use as the doors settle and acclimatise to the building environment.
Regular and thorough inspections are particularly important in high-occupancy residential buildings where people are sleeping but are vital for compliance and safety in every property. Hospitals are other locations where fire doors are likely to suffer more intense wear and tear, due to round-the-clock and high-impact use, such as porters who use beds to open doors.
Therefore, when asking how often should fire doors be checked, you’ll notice there isn’t one definitive answer. Instead, a bespoke inspection plan should be produced to ensure fire doors remain compliant, with six monthly inspections as a minimum. Adaston can assist with both the formulation and execution of this inspection programme through its expert, experienced and third party accredited surveying division.
Damaged Fire Doors
Any damage or alteration to fire doors can prevent them from working as intended, potentially putting lives at risk. If your door is designed to last 30 minutes but has suffered even a slight adjustment, it may last a lot less than this in the event of a fire. If you notice damage, such as a cracked glass panel, you must act immediately rather than waiting for the next inspection date.
A regular inspection as part of your planned preventative maintenance ensures all doors are working properly. Not only is this essential for safety, but it ensures your building remains compliant and in line with both legislation and relevant insurances. An additional long-term benefit is maintenance helps to extend the lifespan of your doors, leading to reduced replacement costs.
Who Should Carry Out Fire Door Inspections?
Along with the guidance on how often should fire doors be checked, let’s cover who should do the inspections. It’s recommended for a third-party accredited surveyor to conduct your fire door inspection for total safety and peace of mind. While a staff member may carry out your in-house fire risk assessments, these are very different from fire door surveys and inspections.
An accredited surveyor can thoroughly check your fire doors, building a remediation plan where necessary to ensure all doors are safe and compliant. At Adaston, we’re third-party accredited through the IFC and FDIS scheme, and our experienced team assesses the following:
- Door frame to leaf gaps: is there any distortion, or are hold-open devices in place?
- Glazing apertures: are glass panels cracked or damaged?
- All ironmongery: are hinges, lever handles and locks up to standard?
- Seals: are they improperly fitted, damaged or loose?
- Automatic closers: do the doors close properly and in a satisfactory time?
- Safety signs: are regulatory safety signs in position as per BS5499-4:2013?
Whether it’s your first inspection or part of ongoing maintenance, Adaston is on hand to help protect your property and people.
In summary, the answer to how often should fire doors be checked is at least every six months. There are scenarios where you’ll need to do this more often, but Adaston can assist to create a plan of inspection bespoke for your building and needs.
Contact us today to discuss your fire inspections.
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