Fire doorsThis month we begin a series of short articles on the elements of fire prevention and fire safety. Over the coming months we will cover various topics around fire prevention. This month we are talking about fire doors. Fire doors are there to prevent the spread of fire and allow personnel to exit rapidly in case of emergency.


Fire Door Testing

Fire doors have different ratings. To test doors, they are subjected to destructive testing. Two doors of the same type will be tested. One door on the outside surface and the other on the inside surface.

Heat is applied and the rating depends on how long before structural failure occurs and heat and gas from combustion escapes through the door. The rating class indicates how well it fares under three measurements:

  • Integrity: The door’s overall ability to withstand fire, and movement out of the frame which should be no more than 25mm.
  • Stability: How well the door itself holds up, and what gaps form on the door’s surface.
  • Insulation: How well a door can keep the temperature of the fire at bay. The temperature is measured on the outside away from the fire and should be below 140°C.

Fire Door Ratings

Fire doors are rated by Class A,B,C,D, E and F


Class Stability Integrity Insulation Impact test Notes
A 1 hour 30 minutes 30 minutes None Fire-resistant core panel.
B 2 hours 1 hour I hour None Fire-resistant core panel. Ideal in elevator shafts and stairwells.
C 2 hours 2 hours None None Commonly used as room doors or openings into corridors.
D 2 hours 2 hours 2 hours 27kg Doors are tested to withstand impacts such as flying debris from explosions and are typically used in external applications.
E 30 minutes 30 minutes 30 minutes  



Door is a solid with either a chipboard or solid laminated timber core commonly used for front doors to multi-unit flats of not more than 3 floors high, and to provide a fire barrier in residential homes between the garage and the rest of the home.


F 30 minutes 30 minutes  






Door with either a chipboard or solid laminated timber core and the no fire-resistant core panel


Fire Door Installation

If doors are purchased separately then it is important to ensure that all components of the door are of a reliable standard that complies with the minimum requirements of SABS. The frame must be a purpose-built, fire-resistant frame and all hardware such as hinges, handles and locks must be fitted correctly and according to manufacturer’s specifications.

Doors are something we all take for granted. You open them go through and close them. They are used for privacy, security, keeping the heat in or out. Managers even have open door policies…

But one thing all doors have in common is that they are there for a purpose.

Do you have the correct fire doors fitted and are they fit for purpose? Give Firebrand a call to discuss your requirements.