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Flat fire door for private entrance

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Guest Andy Hankin

I live in a Victorian house converted in to four flats. I am the on the top (2nd floor). My flat entrance door opens to stairs down to the communal hall way which leads to the main entrance door. I am at the top so no one would pass my flat in case of a fire. The Fire Risk Assessment recommended each flat installing a self-closing device as a priority. I have done this to conforming standards.

The second comment was 'intumescing & smoke seals are recommended as part of an improvement plan''.

Specifically related to the intumescing & smoke seals, do I legally have to do this or is this merely a recommendation? 

Any advice or guidance docs would be much appreciate.

Andy

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Guest Ian

I have a 2 bed flat on the 2nd (top) floor of a block of flats that I rent out.

The managing agent has had a fire risk assessment completed and I need to change my door to a FD30 with self closing, 3 hinges and appropriate seals. I am happy with all of that but they have also said “smoke alarms have to be hard wired” if you are a landlord but not if you are a private owner.

I consider myself to be very responsible. I have 2 ceiling smoke alarms, a carbon monoxide alarm and a fire blanket in the kitchen - all checked every 6 months.

I rang my local fire station and told them about the “hard wired” smoke alarms and they said it was not a legal requirement - so do I have to do it?

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On 07/08/2019 at 17:28, Guest Ian said:

I have a 2 bed flat on the 2nd (top) floor of a block of flats that I rent out.

The managing agent has had a fire risk assessment completed and I need to change my door to a FD30 with self closing, 3 hinges and appropriate seals. I am happy with all of that but they have also said “smoke alarms have to be hard wired” if you are a landlord but not if you are a private owner.

I consider myself to be very responsible. I have 2 ceiling smoke alarms, a carbon monoxide alarm and a fire blanket in the kitchen - all checked every 6 months.

I rang my local fire station and told them about the “hard wired” smoke alarms and they said it was not a legal requirement - so do I have to do it?

It's not strictly a requirement in existing rented premises, the legislation (seperate to that within the remit of the FRA) compelling private landlords to provide smoke alarms is vague enough to make the use of Grade F (battery only) smoke alarms legal. If you were to carry out a full rewire then under Building Regulations you would need combined mains & battery alarms (Grade D1 if rented, D2 if owner occupied)

The risk assessment is for legislation that doesn't even apply inside your flat beyond measures protecting the common areas and other occupiers (i.e. the front door and in substandard construction buildings parts of a communal fire alarm system) 

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On 30/07/2019 at 11:31, Guest Andy Hankin said:

I live in a Victorian house converted in to four flats. I am the on the top (2nd floor). My flat entrance door opens to stairs down to the communal hall way which leads to the main entrance door. I am at the top so no one would pass my flat in case of a fire. The Fire Risk Assessment recommended each flat installing a self-closing device as a priority. I have done this to conforming standards.

The second comment was 'intumescing & smoke seals are recommended as part of an improvement plan''.

Specifically related to the intumescing & smoke seals, do I legally have to do this or is this merely a recommendation? 

Any advice or guidance docs would be much appreciate.

Andy

If the conversion was Building Regs compliant and is a 'Stay Put' building then ultimately they should be present, but based on the size of premises they are not an immediate requirement (based on the LGA Guide covering fire safety in purpose built flats)

If a non compliant conversion and thus using full evacuation then under the LACORS guide they should be FD30S doors with strips & smoke seals

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Guest Gemma

I've come across this forum and I too are in a similar situation. I live in a flat above shops, I'm on the second floor but all the flats have their own front door leading out onto a communal open balcony with two exits to the left and right. We've had an inspection and they said all of our doors have failed and need to be replaced with fire doors. I would understand replacing them if we came out into a communal internal hallway but i cant see the logic if we all come out of our doors onto an open balcony with two exits to use. Does this sound right? Any advice would be great.

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As its a communal balcony, it would be expected that other residents may have to get past your flat entrance door to reach the escape?  Therefore, if your door failed to provide fire separation others could be harmed?  If that's not the case (noted, you say there are two exits) ask the fire risk assessor why your door needs to be replaced?

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Guest Lana

On the topic , we are currently renovating a ground floor flat of a two-storey terraced house. Our Building Control man told us that our internal doors need to be fire resistant (FD30). We have changed the entrance door to a FD30, this leads to a shared corridor which has the mai door. We are struggling to find made to measure FD30 internal doors ( floor to ceiling) and looking at what is written on this thread we do not require internal fire resistant doors given that our flat is on the ground floor. 

Would anyone be able to change form this? If our Building Control man insists is there any regulation I can refer him to ? 

 

Many thanks 

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The guidance is Approved Document B (Fire Safety) Vol 2 which states the front doors should be a FD30s door with a self closer and internal doors should be a least FD20 doors without a self closer but this depends on the layout of the flat and without a physical survey or detail plans it is impossible to give a full answer.

But if the premises was not being dealt with by building control then HOUSING – FIRE SAFETY Guidance on fire safety provisions for certain types of existing housing would apply, check out page 45, you could point this out to the BCO/AI.

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Guest Barbara

I have a  security gate leading onto my balcony l am the only one with my balcony  l have now received a letter to say that the council is removing it next week l live on my own once my gate is removed l will have unsafe open access to anybody who wants to come in l have been burgled twice before l got my gate l am willing to pay for anything anyone can please help me with  l am very frightened by not having some security  l look forward to hearing from you 

 

 

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It all depends on how it is fastened on the inside can you open it from the inside without the use of a key and is it relatively easy to open?

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Guest Roger b

A small apartment block with 4 apartments, a lobby and one exit door to outside which opens in does the exit door need to be a fire door,

thanks

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So you have four flats and each flat has an FD30s flat entrance door?

Then you have a lobby with an FD30s door but you don't say if the lobby is to a stair case, to a lift or whether all the flats are ground floor but with a lobby before the main entrance door to the block?

Your question seems to be about the door that opens to and from the outside to the block of flats?   If I have that right, then this door would not usually need to be a fire resisting door (unless there's a particular reason why that door needs to provide fire protection) because the door opens to/from an outside area.

Guidance at the website  https://www.local.gov.uk/fire-safety-purpose-built-flats  may be useful?

Edited by Neil ashdown
To provide more information.

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A door to outside (fresh air) the final exit door would not usually need to be a fire resisting door, unless there's a particular reason why that door needs to provide fire protection, for example opening onto a narrow alleyway or too close to an external escape. Assuming yours is the ground floor flat it could be argued that a fire emerging from your flat front door could affect those escaping from the upper flats?

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Guest Chris
On 16/03/2020 at 08:26, Tom Sutton said:

A door to outside (fresh air) the final exit door would not usually need to be a fire resisting door, unless there's a particular reason why that door needs to provide fire protection, for example opening onto a narrow alleyway or too close to an external escape. Assuming yours is the ground floor flat it could be argued that a fire emerging from your flat front door could affect those escaping from the upper flats?

Hi Tom,

I have been reading this forum and some of this it specific to me. I have recently acquired and now renovating a buy to let flat. The flat is on floor 2 (top floor). Tesco’s on the ground floor. And 2 flats in between mine. The building has its stairs all outside in fresh air. My flat is the furthest away from any of the neighbours.

Does my door need to be a fire door?  

Regards,

Chris 

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Guest Gertrude
On 04/07/2019 at 20:13, AnthonyB said:

 In smaller blocks a risk appropriate tiered approach to the minimum standard door is advised in government guidance - although a current standard FD30s doorset is of course the best protection.

I live in a 3 storey block (9 flats), could we get away without personal fire doors as our front doors?  My problem is that there is a lot of structural movement in our building.  This means that tight fitting doors jam periodically.  It once took me an hour to yank open my door to get out of my flat.  The previous owner replaced the original fire door with an ordinary hardwood front door (with some glazing & a spy hole & a brass door knocker).  Whenever the door jams, I just sand down the edge of the door & the problem is solved.  I am now being told I must replace this with a fire door.  I suspect I will not be able to sand it down if it jams, because of all the seals.  And it is more likely to get jammed because it has to be tight fitting.  Please help!

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If the doors are onto an enclosed common escape route the simple answer is sadly no. The doors are allowed to have a gap of 3-4mm rather than being really tight up.

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Guest GrahamM

Hi, I have just bought a flat, (two stories), on the ground floor with my own private front door, which is not a fire door. My private front door opens to my private hallway with doors coming off for bathroom, kitchen, living room and bedrooms. There are windows in every room. All of these rooms, except the bathroom, have fire doors. The previous owners removed the kitchen door because the kitchen is so small, but they left it for me with all the screws etc. I would like to remove it completely and have it open, with an archway, into my private hallway. Is this allowed? 

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Guest Andrey

Hello, gentlemen,

i can see a lot of good advices on the forum. 

i live in a flat on the 6th floor of a building and am considering renovations.

I can see that originally all the doors in the flat are fd30s... perhaps slightly over engineered.

I understand that the front entrance door to the flat (which leads to a landing with lift and fire escape) has to be an FD30. 

Internal doors ? - there are 3 rooms in the flat. 2 bedrooms and 1 kichen / living room. All rooms are connected to the corridor inside the flat which leads to the main door which is fd30 (as mentioned above). DO the internal doors need to be firerated as well?

 

Thank you in advance!

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Reference to the document 'Fire Safety in Purpose Built Blocks of Flats' at  https://www.local.gov.uk/fire-safety-purpose-built-flats  will enable you to decide on the fire rating requirements for your internal doors.  The  requirement for the flat entrance door will be FD30(s) minimum and must be fitted with a suitable self-closing device.

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Guest Andrey

Neil, thank you for the link. It is quite an extensive document. Any chance you can give me your thoughts on my question?

 

 

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