We often get asked, “Why do I need special hinges for my fire door?” “Why are Fire Door Hinges so big and expensive?”
Let’s explain a few of the main points…
The first is the sheer weight of the door. A standard hollow core door weighs in at about 15kg, but a 30 minute fire door typically weighs around 40kg. Talk about 60 or 120 minute doors and the weight keeps piling on! A standard hinge will quickly wear out when trying to hold this kind of mass up, but our Grade 13 fire door hinges are tested for up to 120kg with a 10-year guarantee.
Secondly, when used with a door closer (which many fire doors are), the wear and tear on the hinges is greatly increased. A rule of thumb is to add 20% for standard closers, but 75% for back-check closers. Fire door hinges are designed to take this extra weight factored in.
Third – consider the effects of a serious fire on the door. The door has to hold the fire back for at least 30 minutes, but often enduring temperatures of over 1000 degrees Centigrade. The door warps and chars, and there is often a considerable air pressure difference either side of the door.
An ordinary hinge will simply give up very quickly, but a proper Grade 11 or Grade 13 fire door hinge has the following benefits:
- Stainless steel or thick steel construction gives tremendous strength
- The large hinge area and large screws give a very solid fix
- The pinned and capped design prevents the pin dropping out of the hinge
You also need to fit Intumescent Hinge Pads behind the hinges to maintain the intumescent protection along the perimeter of the door. Happily, these are inexpensive and really easy to fit!
Fire door hinges are manufactured to very high standards, and offer fantastic performance for both everyday use and in a severe fire situation. They are available in many finishes, and with their 10-year guarantee they are built to last.