17 Jan, 2023

How can I improve my fire door inspections?

What are fire door inspections?

Fire Doors are essential in all buildings and must be regularly inspected, tested and maintained to meet the requirements of article 17 of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety Order) 2005. These doors are often subject to misuse and, like any other door, will have wear and tear especially in buildings with high volumes of people like hospitals. 

Fire doors should be regularly inspected: inspections should be two-fold, carried out visually to check if any preparatory work may need to be done, and a full inspection that must be carried out by a qualified contractor.

Qualified inspectors will cover a wide range of areas within a fire door inspection to make sure it is in good working order. This includes visually inspecting the door and checking:

  • The fire door hinges and all door hardware to check their condition, fitting and operation
  • The door signage
  • The condition of any hold open devices
  • The condition of a door closer
  • Relevant markings, for example from the British Woodworking Federation to demonstrate the quality of fire resistance
  • Locks and latches
  • Any windows and their suitability to be used to prevent fire
  • The gaps between the door and the door frame
  • The door seals

Under the Fire Safety Order it is a legal requirement for the company or person that has day to day control of a premises to ensure that their fire doors are regularly inspected to prevent fires and ultimately to protect the visitors of their premises. Given these are passive fire prevention systems it’s vital that they are regularly maintained. The British Woodworking Federation Fire Door Alliance recommend “periodic checks should be carried out once every six months although newly occupied buildings may require more frequent checks in the first year of use.”

How to prepare for a fire door inspection? 

As a building manager you have a duty of care to those working in the building and those visiting the building to be fully prepared for fire door inspections. These checks should be integrated into your building management plans and processes. 

There are a number of ways in which you can prepare for a fire door inspection:

  1. Check the space around the door is clear - is there furniture or decorations blocking the passage to the fire door or preventing it from opening or closing fully?
  2. Check the door closer is in good working order - Is there any visible leakage, oil or damaged hardware?
  3. Check that no additional hardware has been fixed to the door - Does it have a deadbolt, a doorstop or a latch that would impede the prevention of fire?
  4. Check all fire door signage - Can people clearly identify the fire door should they need to exit in the event of a fire? The fire label should be on the hinge of the door and on the frame - you’ll need to replace the label if it has been damaged or fallen off.
  5. Check all door hardware including the lock, the hinges and the frame - Does the latch fully engage when the door is closed? Are the hinges clean and dust-free?

How can I improve my fire door inspections?

As building manager it’s likely you will have many checks and processes working alongside one another to keep the premises running smoothly. The key with fire door inspections is ensuring they are thorough and there is a record of maintenance and issues so that you’re easily able to notify other departments for repairs. 

Kizeo forms mobileUsing mobile forms to complete fire door inspections gives the facilities team access to real time data on fire door condition alongside some other tangible benefits.

  • Increase accuracy - your fire door inspector can complete inspection forms on site in real time leaving less room for error when transcribing notes later on. Mandatory fields also mean they won’t miss any important details.

  • Geolocation - indicate which fire door your fire inspector is checking.

  • Photos and image upload - custom fields such as taking photos and uploading straight into a mobile forms app give accurate depictions of fire door condition.

  • Scheduling - set reminders for future inspections and send pre-filled forms to the necessary team. No missed door inspections!

  • Reporting - Once fire door inspections are complete, send reports (in a variety of formats) to the relevant team members to action.

Kizeo Forms is a mobile form builder that gives you the autonomy to build your own customised forms without the need for any IT or programming knowledge. Used in a plethora of industries including transport, engineering, facilities and supply chain development. Kizeo Forms is a flexible mobile app that will save you time, money and improve efficiency. For more info on Kizeo Forms click here.

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