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Laundry cupboard - are fire doors needed?

Guest MVL

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Dear all, 

I hope you will be able to help me figure out an issue that I am having. I recently purchased a flat and decided to do some works - in particular, I built a utility closet to house a washing machine and a dryer in the entrance hall. I have been working with Building Control and they first demanded a 30 minutes fire rated door to be installed in the cupboard. They have now added the requirement for the door to be fitted with smoke seals and intumescent strips. 

After receiving this second request, I turned to the Approved Document B: Part 2, as the requests started to seem excessive. From my research, it would appear that a fire door is not in fact needed, as this is a Ground Floor flat, with its own separate entrance not connected to the main building, and every habitable room has adequate means of escape as every room has a window with an opening wide enough to comply with the Approved Document B. Am I missing something which explains why the Building Inspector is requiring doors fire rated 30 minutes fitted with smoke seals and intumescent strips? If, on the other hand, what he is requesting goes above the standard contained in the Building Regulations, can I challenge his request in any way? 

Thank you in advance for any help you might be able to offer, I can assure you it is highly appreciated. 


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It is all about interpretation you call this construction a closet the BCO/AI most probably calls it an ancillary room with a fire risk and wants to protect the entrance hall. The entrance hall is your principle means of escape (MoE) and the window escapes are alternate MoE, to be used as a last resort.

You can could work out your interpretation and argue you case to the BCO/AI , he may change his mind or you could make an official appeal but I  would think the costs would not be worth it. The extra costs would not be very high and it would increase the fire safety of your flat for you and your family.

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