As concern for safety in the workplace grows year on year, employees are rightly enjoying greater protection from accidental injury as they do their jobs. Yet for employers fitting safety essentials can become a costly headache at best – or a ticking time bomb at worst. Here we explain why considering five key points could help you to avoid unnecessary costs (and unscrupulous cowboys) as you install steel fire doors in your commercial property.
Why do I need fire doors?
The first question to ask concerns your motives for fitting fire doors. Perhaps it’s an essential safety requirement – in which case, you’ll be plumping for practicality over any other factor. Maybe you simply want to update your existing installation. It could be important that your installation perfectly blends in with its existing surroundings. Your objectives will guide your product selection, so it’s important that you bear in mind all influential factors before going ahead.
What’s my budget?
Budget is important when it comes to fire doors – because as we’ll explain throughout this piece, there are many different variations to choose from, each with specific features. All fire doors must be manufactured to a certain safety standard – so no matter what, they will be secure and designed to perform in an emergency.
How will the fire doors operate?
Most fire doors are manually operated – but there is now an electrically powered option. These fire doors are often favoured from a security perspective, as they’ll automatically open and close saving valuable time in the event of an emergency. Naturally electric fire doors are more expensive – so you’ll need to consider this when scoping your budget. Some properties are also protected or have specific requirements for additional construction work or modification – so you’ll need to check this with your landlord or local authority before work begins.
Do I require any additional capabilities?
Fire doors now come with variations and additional specifications to suit a range of needs. For example, do your fire doors need to be especially heavy duty in light of the activity conducted in your property? Are you managing a large venue and therefore need oversized doors? There are also extras that aren’t strictly essential, but could enhance the safety (and visual appeal) provided by the fire doors. These include audio signals as well as the traditional flashing lights, and different finishes and colours to match interior designs or branding.
Am I dealing with a reputable fire door company?
Even if everything appears to be above board, it’s a good idea to ask for honest testimonials and reviews from previous clients. These could be in the form of feedback posted on third-party sites, or written thank you letters and emails. If your provider struggles to produce any of the above, or isn’t happy for you to contact previous clientele to obtain their opinion, it could be a potential red flag. Reputable fire door manufacturers and fitters tend to have an excellent track record – with plenty of previous customers lining up to provide honest feedback.