Certificated fire doorsets save lives and property

Engineered fire-certificated timber doorsets manufactured to industry recognised third party accreditation schemes, provide precious life-saving opportunity for safe evacuation while additional time is gained for the control of the spread of fire in a building.

The development of modern building methods and the revolution in product design have been meteoric over recent decades and are influential in the specification and installation of products, materials and systems that provide ultimate levels of protection.

Completion costs for today’s buildings have in real terms reduced over this period and final installation costs for most building components and products have become increasingly more competitive.  This is supported by the reality of year-on-year inflation in the price of raw materials counter-balanced with the improved yield and productivity of today’s manufacturing processes. An engineered fire doorset is a real example with the average selling price of the installed assembly being less today than it was in 2005.  At that time a leading firm of quantity surveyors illustrated how the final installed cost of a factory assembled doorset would save over 25% of the traditional method of procurement which is still in evidence today.

Building Regulations’ and building control impose strict rules for compliance in accordance with the very latest industry-recognised certification and performance standards with products and systems that are tested and proven by third party bodies to protect life and property.  The role of the fire doorset is to prevent fire from spreading from its source to other parts of the building by effectively closing off the room, or compartment, in which the fire started.  Members of the BWF Fire Doorset Accreditation Scheme (BWF-CERTIFIRE) offer independently accredited timber fire doorsets – that’s the door leaf, frame, lock and hardware – of 30, 60, 90 and 120 minutes.

In the simulated fire test conducted by BWF-CERTIFIRE members, the doorset is in a closed position contained by the doors closers.  The hot gases from the fire source cause the intumescent materials between the door leaf and the frame to expand rapidly and close the gaps between the components.  This lasts for the period of the specified fire rated door up to two hours.  In extreme installations where very expensive plant is to be protected, the fire rating designation can be even higher.

In domestic housing, where 50% of all fires start in the kitchen, this compartment could be protected by 30 minute fire resistant walls, ceilings and fire doorsets, this protection period providing vital time for occupant rescue.

All the components that make up a fire doorset are tested and approved under the same certification and backed by the BWF-CERTIFIRE Fire Doorset Accreditation Scheme, one of the industry’s leading third party schemes.  It ensures products sourced and provided to the property owner and correctly installed will protect property and more importantly, save lives.

“Products that are not sourced responsibly propose a significant risk factor and it is alarming that even in today’s rigorous environment that the vast majority of fire door installations are made by contractors buying all the components separately and constructing the assembly on the building site,” says Roy Wakeman OBE, CEO, The Performance Timber Products Group Limited (PTPG), and President of the BWF.  “To make absolutely sure of a safe and sound specification the risk factor can only be overcome by installing a complete fire door assembly which has been fully accredited.”

In the case of the BWF, a completed fire doorset carries a prominently displayed tamper proof label.  The label identifies the period of time that the product will perform for and relevant information about the manufacturer.  An identification number provides the manufacturing source and date of production.  This is key to the operating life of the building which must be maintained in accordance with the life time performance of the doorset.

“Now that the industry has seen the launch of the Fire Door Inspection Scheme by the BWF and the Guild of Architectural Ironmongers, the final comfort can be provided in that fire doorsets specified, sourced and installed correctly, inspected and maintained, will give years of life saving and property protection.”

Such schemes and regulations force less scrupulous manufacturers to improve standards and the higher degree of labelling and traceability provide a more demanding test regime and more reliable fire door solution.  The BWF-CERTIFIRE Scheme is recognised by many regulatory authorities worldwide as an international mark of fire safety.

Companies under the umbrella of PTPG include John Porter Doors Limited (JPDL), one of the leading manufacturers of fire and other performance timber doorsets, and the Performance Window Group (PWG), encompassing the market leading timber window brands of Mumford & Wood, Clearwood UK, Timberwindows.com, Dale Windows and the English Glass House.

JPDL doorsets have been specified in the leisure, security, commercial and MOD sectors since the mid 1970s and became the recognised specialist supplier of engineered timber doorsets for the health sector by developing the HTM58 hospital doorset.  John Porter doorsets can be seen at the Building Centre, Store Street, London W1, or call  0191 5165160 for sales and technical advice.  www.johnporter.co.uk

There are currently no comments for this article.

Login to comment. slider