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Guest ChrisDo

Why do I need a door closer?

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Guest ChrisDo

Please can you advise where I can find information concerning when it is a requirement to have door closers.

Closers have been removed in our apartment and I can see no legal reason why I would need to replace them. Can you advise?

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Hi

If your doors are fire doors, then they need to be kept closed at all times (unless being used, of course) to stop the spread of fire. This is achieved with door closers which can be a bit of a pain as you want to move freely through your apartment without having to open heavy fire doors. You can use fire door retainers to keep the fire doors open, though. A fire door retainer will release the fire door and allow the door to close when there is a fire alarm going off.

You do not have to install visible overhead door closers; especially in apartments you would want to install concealed door closers like the Perko or the Astra concealed door closers.

Harry

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Guest ChrisDo

Hi Tom

Our holiday apartment was built in 2003 and we purchased it in 2006.It is let out for holiday makers. It has its own personal front door (non-fire door) which leads to a staircase (down) and the apartment rooms. All of the doors used to have two chain closers but were removed because the doors slammed shut so hard that the frames were cracking and were a child injury hazard. Also the doors were always left wedged open.

My concern is with holiday tennants, do we legally need to replace the door closers? The doors now have a notice which says they must be closed when the building is vacated. The end result is the doors are normally left closed more than when they had closers!

Two of our rooms have outside access for escape.

There is an apartment above ours.

I can't find out if we legally need door closers. Can you advise?

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Hi Chris

The only doors that require self closers are fire doors protecting the means of escape. If the front door of the apartment was left open and there was a fire in your apartment and consequently the staircase was filled with smoke, would the people using the stairs be trapped upstairs, in other words is there common areas in the block of apartments?

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Guest angela valent

Fireman informed my friend it has been entered into law last year and everyone in the tower block must have door closer but , being severely disabled i do not beleive i must have it as then , from being housebound i will become an absolute prisoner. Help/ Who is wright and who is wrong ?????

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In general all front doors in a tower block need to be FDs and fitted with a self closer or a flat on fire could risk the lives of everybody in the block. Most of these will be standard type self closer but there are free swing self closer available which will allow the door to open and close freely until a fire detector in the flat actuates the self closer, and then it operates like a standard self closer. So talk to your landlord and have a free swing self closer fitted which means you will not be an absolute prison.

http://www.arrow-architectural.com/DDA%20BOOKLET%20July%2006.pdf

http://www.safelincs...g-door-closers/

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Guest Jodie

I am writing from an estate managing company seeking advice on the above. On our estates, our fire doors have a close on the top, to ensure the fire doors are closed at all times. However, we noted that some of the door stops have a magnet that hold the door open; we were advised that when the fire alarms go off, the supply to the magnet will switch off, thus allowing the fire door to shut.

I am contacting yourselves for advice on whether the magnets on the door stops to hold the doors open is a legal requirement, or if fire doors in a residential building only need to have a closer attached?

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On our estates, our fire doors have a close on the top, to ensure the fire doors are closed at all times. However, we noted that some of the door stops have a magnet that hold the door open; we were advised that when the fire alarms go off, the supply to the magnet will switch off, thus allowing the fire door to shut.

All fire doors require a self-closing device to be fitted but if the self-closer causes problems and the door needs to be held open for access reasons then magnetic hold open devices can be fitted. They work as you have suggested check out http://www.firesafe....nd-ironmongery/ incidentally these devices should be tested regularly.

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Guest LucySav

Hi we are going to be renting out our 2 bed flat. We are looking into everything that needs to be done and wondered about fire safety. All the doors in the flat are heavy doors so I guess are fire doors but all the self closing devices had been removed when we purchased the flat and with two young children didn't want to put them back but now am wondering if they need to be made into self closing doors again for renting? I have looked at lots of different websites and none are clear about it. Any help would be great. Kind regards

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If you live in a purpose built block of flats the guidance is Publications | Local Government Association and the flat is not covered by the fire regulations but the common areas are, also building regulation are involved when built or altered. Front doors to flats need to be fire-resisting and self-closing and doors opening on to the hall and kitchen usually need to be fire resistant but not necessarily self closing. If you live in a building that has been converted to flats then your guidance is Guidance on fire safety provisions and it depends on the type of property you live will dictates what is required. Without a lot more details it is difficult to give a definitive answer.

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Guest Jan

Is there any legal requirement for fire doors to be removed from a residential building if there has been a change of use?

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There is no legal requirement for fire doors to be removed from a residential building, but if there is a change of use and a fire door is no longer required for the means of escape, then it could be removed if desired. The building will be subject to Building Regulations .so check out http://www.firesafe.org.uk/fire-safety-in-new-extended-or-altered-buildings/.

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Guest Geoff

Hi All

Regards kitchens in a sheltered housing flat, does the door to the kitchen have to be a Fire door, if so, does that door Have to have a self closer fitted,?

I thought that somewhere in Doc B it said certain doors WITHIN flats did not fall under requirement for doors leading to communal areas?

thanks

Geoff

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It all depends on the layout of the flat, if you consider the kitchen as a place of special fire risk and it is enclosed you need a FD30 door.You are also right about ADB vol 2 2013 Table B1 page 134, states doors to communal areas has to be a FD30s door but doors the hall/landing only need to be FD20 doors.

I believe self closer's should be on all fire doors, because if left open it is no longer a fire door. However it is not very clear in ADB, but it appears, flats only requires them on the fire door separating the flat from the common areas. Residential homes have different rules.

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Guest Marta

Hi

If there is a family flat in a residential student accommodation building, do all doors within the flat require a hold open device?

Marta

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A self contain flat in any building is not subject to the Fire Safety Order, all the doors, other than the front door leading to the common area, do not require a FD30s door with self closer and therefore would not need a hold open devices. The front door of a flat leading to the common area usually require a fire resisting door with a self closer and it is not wise to to keep it open unless absolutely necessary.

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Guest C

Hello

I'm am thinking do renting out my 4 bedroom house as 4 individual lets. Would I need to fit fire doors and self closers on all 4 bedroom doors and the lounge and kitchen doors ? Any help would be greatly appreciated

Many thanks

C

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You would and provide other fire safety precautions as stated in the appropriate guide HOUSING – FIRE SAFETY Guidance on fire safety provisions for certain types of existing housing which will show you what fire safety precautions you should be considering.

Because it will be a change of use you will need Building Regulations approval.

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Guest Maria

I am a little confused regarding fire doors and self closures. We have recently bought a three storey building with 6 self-contained flats. All the doors (the front doors to each flat and internal doors) are all fire doors. Do all the doors need to be fire doors and do they all have to have self closures. Also how do we find out what type of FD doors we have.

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Guest JulieC

Hi. I would like some advice please.

18months ago I bought a ground floor flat. The 3 internal doors (living room, bedroom & bathroom) are fire doors, with self closer chains and the strip of stuff that expands with heat when closed to seal it.

But the self closing chain on the bathroom door was removed at some point by the previous owners. I've never had a problem with it or seen the point of replacing it. Mostly because if the bathroom door was closed all the time there would be no ventilation.

I'm now selling the flat, and the guy buying it is an investor, wanting to let it out to tennants. He wants me to replace the closer chain on the bathroom door.

I don't see why I should have to. I didn't remove it , and I went to B&Q to enquire about the cost of a new one and they don't sell them. So I don't even know where to start!

The closer chain isn't the health and safety feature is it? It's the expanding strip, which is fine.

Can anyone advise? I am in my legal rights to refuse to replace this chain? It's not an essential thing for a residential property and if new owner wants to rent out the property, that's his problem. Am I right?

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Hi Julie

I cannot answer the question who would have to pay for the repair. However, the big question is, whether the door is actually a fire door and whether is has to be one. You could possibly verify that by checking the original building plans. Alternatively, you could have a fire risk assessment carried out. The costs for that is a lot more than the replacement cost for the door closer, though. Hidden fire door closers with chains are quite low cost items.

Harry

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I live in a block of sheltered housing flats which are in the process of having a massive renovation, one upgrade is our Flat front doors, to a new higher fire prevention and are installing a integrated spring to close the door automatically. Unfortunately you have to be a strong fit person to use the door, which I am not, because of the strength required to physically open the door. It is so severe that I have just returned from having spent two days in an emergency visit to hospital after opening the door just twice and because of this the contractors disconnected the spring.

The contractors hired by our council are now being reprimanded and told that they shouldn't have disconnected it and to reconnect the spring, which will basically lock me in my flat!

I know that Health a& Safety rules are there for our protection but surely this is going too far as my Flat door opens out onto a landing which has a fire exit with a properly fitted fire door which opens onto the exit stair well.

If it has to have a spring closure fitted can it be one that doesn't require any strength? I would appreciate your prompt advice as I am being put under a lot of pressure, thank you.

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I do not know which type of door closer has been fitted but you could consider a cam action door closer.

The principal objective of a door closer is, not surprisingly, to close a door and to keep the doors closed in the event of a fire. No wonder then that the ease with which such a door
can be pulled open can be severely compromised by this opposing force. So much so in fact that many users, including the elderly, small children and those with various physical disabilities, find the door can become a
barrier to them or at least it becomes an obstacle to be overcome and a cam action self closer may solve your problems.

Check out the web for "cam action door closer"

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