Fire door hardware choice

Pat Rice, commercial director for UAP, explains why the hardware specialist is engaging with customers to educate and advise on choosing the right door hardware to satisfy fire safety requirements, and how it is supporting door manufacturers in testing fire doors.

We can all appreciate that there are specific issues within the fire door industry, such as correct installation and maintenance, and door hardware has its part to play in minimising the risks caused by fire. It is vital that the best option is specified, installed appropriately and proactively maintained.

We have recently supported several customers by supplying fire-rated hardware for the testing of their composite fire doors. There’s no denying that this is an extremely stressful and costly process. It also highlights one of industry’s greatest challenges: staying current and meeting the latest legislation and standards; a pertinent factor in the wake of Grenfell. The last few months have been particularly difficult with uncertainty over product testing and compliance, something which looks set to continue.

We are doing all that we can to ensure that we stay up to speed and remain a reliable and trustworthy resource for our customers. In keeping our ear to the ground and speaking with contacts in the fenestration and wider construction industry, we can proactively respond to the changes in demand. Our in-house Ukas-accredited testing facility and product development means we have the edge over many of our competitors, enabling us to improve on products we already supply, and develop new, pioneering ranges, quickly and to the highest standards, in-line with market requirements.

The Soterian TS008 letterplate is a perfect example of our ambitions as a hardware designer, balancing performance, practicality and aesthetics. Document Q approved and PAS 24:2016 compliant, the letterplate is Certifire assured for FD60 on 54mm timber doors and tested against the Certifire standard for 30 minutes on 44mm timber doors.

Featuring an intumescent lining that can expand to 50 times its volume to seal any gaps in the door hardware, the fire-rated TS008 letterplate is compliant to BS EN1634-3:2004 smoke leakage regulations.

The letterplate performs without compromising on style; it is streamlined, compact and contemporary. Building occupants benefit from full unrestricted door opening with a minimum internal flap projection of just 35mm. Available in dual colour finish, customers can choose from black, white, polished silver, silver anodised, and gold anodised.

Fire safety guidance states that all doors on an escape route must be easy to open without the need of a key. Thumbturn cylinders are a recommended alternative. Our high-security, Kinetica 3-Star cylinder is available with a child-safe thumbturn variant. Designed for the elderly, people with arthritis and those with limited movement, the cylinder’s patent pending child safe system means that the thumbturn needs to be pushed in by the user first before it will engage and open. The cylinder meets the requirements for FD60 on timber doors and FD30 on composite.

The Kinetica 3-Star cylinder is supplied with five keys and is part of the UAP cylinder £5,000 guarantee scheme. Building occupants also benefit from the company’s Find a Locksmith app.

We have a wide range of door hardware specifically designed to help homeowners and installers, and ensure they meet or exceed fire safety requirements. Compatible with different profiles and materials, our Salamander range of fire-rated products includes letterplates, viewers, auto-locks and hinges. Many are also Secured by Design accredited.