What Are Fire Doors & Why Are They So Important?

By September 23, 2021No Comments

This week, Monday 20th – Friday 26th September is Fire Door Safety Week. FDSW is an initiative managed by the British Woodworking Federation with the mission to bring awareness and increase public understanding of the critical role fire doors play in protecting us and our property.

The FDSW campaign objectives are

• To raise awareness of the critical role of fire doors, drawing attention to specific issues such as poor installation and maintenance.
• To encourage building owners and users to check the operation and condition of their fire doors and to report those that aren’t satisfactory.
• To link together the initiatives of many organisations with common interests in the fire door and passive fire protection industries.
• To engage and educate people, helping the whole building industry and every property owner to understand the correct specification, supply, installation, operation, inspection, and maintenance.

In a bid to aid Fire Door Safety Week’s mission, we have compiled the below information to help those who aren’t familiar with fire doors understand why these doors are so important and what you can do if you think your fire doors are not up to industry standard.

What are fire doors?

A fire door is a door with a fire-resistance rating used as part of a passive fire protection system to reduce the spread of fire and smoke between separate sections of a building or structure. If your building, whether it be a hospital, hotel, or museum, is more than 2 storeys high you must have fire doors between all stairwells and in every habitable room (except toilets/bathrooms).

Why are fire doors so important?

Fire doors are designed to withstand fire for up to 30 minutes. Fire doors help lengthen the short amount of time available when trying to evacuate your building occupants, meaning they can often be the difference between life and death in an emergency situation.

Why do fire doors always have to be closed?

In order to work fire doors to work as intended, they must be closed. Businesses and buildings that prop/wedge their fire doors open can be subjected to fines. Doing this obstructs the fire door’s purpose and will put people’s lives in danger in the event of an emergency. The only safe way for a fire door to be held open is with a certified door retainer device that will release the fire door autonomously when the fire alarm goes off or a fire is detected in the building.

How do I check my fire doors are working as they should?

Here is a foolproof 5 step plan that will help you identify if your fire doors are working as they should be:

What can ACL do to help my building with fire doors?

If you would like to speak to us about passive fire protection in the form of fire doors, send an email to us at or call us on 0800 5003069 outlining your requirements and we will help you make your building a safe environment.

Contact Us