Before we go too far into the topic let’s first talk about why we have fire doors and how much they actually help with fire safety.
Fire doors are an essential part of fire safety and being able to have a good fire strategy plan. They can only achieve this if they are closed, the reason for this is due to how they are designed and how they are meant to work. The main feature of a fire door that grants them the high fire rating is the intumescent strips that line the doorframe. When those strips detect heat, an abnormal level of heat, they expand and seal the doorway completely which can slow down the spread of fire in a building significantly since the fire will have to burn through the door first. Fire doors are also designed to be a lot thicker than a standard door, so they will take longer to burn.
Now it’s a bit easier to understand why you should keep these doors closed at all times, because if they aren’t closed, they can’t do their jobs at all and a fire could spread much quicker. So, if you do see any kind of fire door being held open by anything at all you should always make sure to get rid of that obstruction so the door can close and properly serve its purpose.
While the impact it can have on life and the building itself can be huge it can also affect you monetarily quite a lot as well. If an insurance company were to find out that an essential fire door had been wedged open it might make them less willing to pay for the damages.
It is understandable to want to keep these doors open though as they can be quite heavy to open and if you are a frailer person or are carrying something, encountering a closed fire door can be a bit of a pain but leaving the door open can lead to some very serious damages.
So, while it might not actually be illegal to keep a fire door open it can cause a business to get some hefty fines and it can cause to a massive amount of property damage and a loss of life. So if you see a fire door opened, close it!