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Guest FLora Yao

Gaps of fire door

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Guest SmokeyJoe

Hi Tom et al

I have a property in North Eastern England that was built in 2003. I have had a long running issue with my fire doors in my 3 storey property where they have never fitted properly. I have a standstill agreement with the bespoke builder and my household insurance legal team, so time is not spent legally.

The builder refuses to fit new doors or door sets but keeps returning to bend and adjust the hinges about once every 6 - 12 months.

The problem that I have is that I have FP30 doors as per the building specification but I have large gaps around the edges. These typically are 7mm but can be up to 10mm between the door arise and the door frame. Equally there are large gaps between the door face and the door stop. All this lets noise, draughts and light around these internal doors.

My question is what protections are there that would have been in force in 2003 that actually state the maximum tolerance for these gaps? I've read that the ideal is 3mm +/-1mm but is that an actual hard and fast rule or just a guide? Could someone please advise what the wording is and in what document I can find the exact standard that would unequivocally state the maximum tolerance.around the top and sides of a FP30 door please? I would like to take this to their office and hopefully avoid having to take them to court for failure to build the fire doors in my house correctly. I have 3 children and I worry when I go to sleep at night that the fire doors would not offer my children fire protection on the 2nd floor in the event. Naturally the noise of them going about their business is also quite distracting with conversations with their friends sounding like they are in the same room when both doors are closed.

As for between the floor and the underside of the door, is there any maximums? I appreciate that way that a door behaves in a fire and the pressure differential but from a noise and privacy perspective, I have gaps of over 30mm between the door bottom and the screeds/floorboards. This again I'm sure is excessive but can not find (as I can not afford access to the BSI documents) any details covering maximums.

Many thanks for any light you can shed on the subject. 

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Your premises was subject to the building regulations which says it should be designed and constructed so people are warned and can escape at all material times. Now it is the Approved Document Part B Fire Safety. (ADB) Volume 1 that gives the details how that can be attained which in turn points to british standards for further recommendations. Although not law are considered to be best practice and holds sway in the courts.

Check out appendix B in ADB page 64 and it refers you to BS 8214 1990 which is now 2008 and recommended,as you say 2 t0 4mm gap, sides and top. The threshold gap was 8mm in the 1990 BS, and in the 2008 states it should be in compliance with the manufactures installation guide.

You try the local reference library they sometimes have access to BS.

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Guest Bob

I am currently trying to repair FDs doors in an NHS inpatient facility, Our problem doors are double door sets and also double action. The frame is cupped and the door edged curved. The door to door gap is 3mm and filled with a brush seal, the hinge side has a 6 mm door to frame gap but it is filled with an 8 mm brush smoke seal.

is this compliant with legislation? Also  a 4mm gap is that wood to wood or seal to wood? 

Thanks

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All depends on the reasons for the fire door, is it to prevent the spread of fire/heat or is it to prevent the spread of cold smoke or both. If it is to contain the smoke the cold smoke seals (brush seals) appear to be satisfactory, if it is to seal the gaps in the door to contain fire/heat (intumescent seals)  then the 6mm gap is in excess of the recommended 4mm but could be acceptable. I would then consider could you reduce the gap without increasing the gap elsewhere, also I guess it is a floor hinge, which would limit your options, consequently without surveying the situation my best guess would be to accept the 6mm gap, providing it is not a high fire risk.

The gap is measured from wood to wood and 6mm gap is not compliant with the appropriate British Standard but fire safety is all about risk assessment.

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Guest FMD1

Regards intumescent strip / css on fire doors, if its a Double set, do the inner stiles both need seals, eg, intu with css on one side with intu on the other, also, do they need to be offset so as not to expand against each other causing a possible pinging open of the doors, or is it acceptable to just have intu with css on one side ?

thanks

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Depends on the type of stile, is it rebated, how many intumescent strips required to meet the FR standard and they must be offset so as not to expand against each other.

Download http://www.asdma.com/pdf/BPG.pdf and all the information you need you will find in chapter 13 & 14.

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Guest Mike

I have had fire doors fitted on a student accomodation. Checking gaps on snagging and some are measuring 4.5mm and 5mm. Smoke seals all fitted and brush is touching door all round. Is it really going to be an issue with the gap.     Sprinklers also fitted throughout. 

 

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I would think the doors would behave reasonable well in a fire situation, with the intumescent strips sealing the gaps and the passage of cold smoke controlled, but it is wrong according the the appropriate British Standard.

It would all depend in which situations the gaps need to be considered, in an audit you could get away with it depending on the FRS inspecting Officer, in a court of law they would be quoting the British standard at you, though you only exceeded the tolerances by a very small amount, it all depends on the level of risk and consequences you are prepared to accept.

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Guest kasa

Hi Tom,

We recently fixed FD30 fire doors to a commercial property.  but we were not able to use the door frame came with the door due to the structure of building.  but we were able to put smoke seals for the door frames that we fixed. will it be okay?

Thank you

Kasa

 

 

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Guest griff

hi I have some fire doors that have bigger gaps then 4mm  around them  for example it could be 6 mm at top 8mm at bottom the seals are fitted in the framework any suggestions on how to resolve would be grateful 

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Assuming the side gaps are 3mm +/- 1mm then you could raise the door and reduce the top gap to 3mm +/- 1mm. Then add a larger hardwood lipping to the threshold or fit an suitable, adjustable smoke seal, to the threshold. 

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Guest Ben

Hello

i have numerous fire doors across and estate of properties I manage. A number of the doors are single doors fitted into a door frame that has smoke seals at the top and down both sides. The question I have is does the 3mm rule apply to the door in terms of gap between door and frame. The door itself sites in the frame and no day light can be seen. I would say the gaps are between 5mm and 8mm. Although a gap is there the door does close itself correctly and sits against the frame. The understanding is the seals would still work in a fire environment and close up the gap between door and frame

I understand the gap needs to be closed up for double doors that meet but when it comes to a single door in a door frame I am not sure

thanks

ben

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Simple answer usually yes (unless the manufacturer of the doorset states that frame and door combination can tolerate a larger gap and still perform correctly). Are they closing in a rebate and do they have intumescent seals?

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Guest aurora

Why do you measure the gap from the pull face of the door?  Why not the other side?

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There are two gaps to consider when inspecting the top edge and vertical edges of a fire resisting door:

1) On the pull side there's the gap between the edges of the door leaf and the door frame.

2) On the push side there's the gap between the face of the door leaf and the edge of the door frame rebate stop. If the door leaf does not sit close to or on the stop, then it may be proud of the door frame on the pull side and this may be a cause of premature fire separation failure.

Then there's the threshold gap too.  If  inspecting timber based fire doors, consult 'BS 8214:2016 Timber based fire door assemblies - Code of practice' for relevant information.

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