Failing fire doors? How to make compliance easy

Stairways - Failing Fire Doors

Shocking data released recently by the Fire Door Inspection Scheme (FDIS) shows that the vast majority of the 100,000+ fire doors they inspected last year failed to meet the required standards.

Three in four didn’t pass inspection, and incredibly almost a third of the fire doors failed due to incorrect installation – potentially putting lives at risk in the event of a fire from the moment they went in.

But there is a solution – fire safety compliant door sets, which are easier and faster to install, safe, and even cheaper!

Putting lives at risk

Currently too many people are getting it wrong. Worryingly the FDIS figures show the highest number of fire door inspection failures included healthcare buildings, local authorities and housing associations, and private housing. Louise Halton, FDIS Scheme Manager, warned: “a tragedy is simply waiting to happen, especially so in buildings that are home to vulnerable residents.

But as she also points out “this situation is entirely preventable” and a “fit for purpose fire door can save lives.”
We believe opting for door sets over traditionally hung doors or door kits makes achieving a ‘fit for purpose fire door’ very simple.

Faster, safer fitting with door sets

Installing frames and then hanging doors on site is far more challenging, requiring a couple of hours of a skilled carpenter’s time. They also leave much more room for error, with gaps around the doors being too large for example (this was one of the most common reasons for failing an inspection according to the FDIS.)

A door set, which is precision cut and built off-site, and can be delivered complete, even with all mortised ironmongery installed – and totally compliant with fire safety regulation. Installation can be as quick as 15 minutes, and with far less room for human error to creep in.

Saving so much time in skilled labour is also key to factor in when accounting for the cost of these units. Door sets can work out not only easier, faster and safer, but cheaper too.

Fire compliant door solutions

Testing fire door components is just as important as the fire door itself because all the components work together to keep the door securely within the frame. Doors which aren’t fitted with compatible fire-rated components can become vulnerable to a fire.

So, another key difference with Stairways standard door sets is that the components have been third party tested together as one unit. That is not the case with doors and frames put together on site, with components brought together from different suppliers, and never tested for fire safety compliance as one unit.

For commercial developments, student accommodation, and apartment blocks in particular, which have to meet more stringent fire safety requirements, this is a solution which can not only ensure compliance, but potentially save lives in the event of a fire.

With the issue of proper installation of fire doors even more relevant following the Fire Safety Act 2021 and the Building Safety Act 2022, this is an area where it doesn’t pay to cut corners. Getting it right the first time with a door set is the sound decision for a multitude of reasons.

Door sets, which we offer in a range of attractive options and finishes, can work well in every setting, including standard detached and semi-detached homes. In fact, we’re finding high end home builders are opting for them more and more for their solid, quality look, which adds to the luxury aesthetic they’re seeking to create.


It’s also worth noting that a Stairways door set will stand you in good stead in the longer term in more ways than one. We offer PinPoint – a readable data pin installed in the door containing its digital passport. If you opt for this option all the data, including certification, specification, installation instructions, manufacturer’s schedules and component details, is readable in the door, to help with inspections and compliance going forwards too.

If you’d like to explore our range of door sets see or get in touch with our doors division on 01938 558833.

Fact sheet: Fire doors (regulation 10)


Author: Stairways

Stairways, founded in 1989, has grown to become one of the UK’s largest manufacturers of carpentry and joinery products. Stairways now boast three state-of-art facilities that offer over 85,000 sq ft production capacity. Stairways goal is to raise their profile and brand awareness to become known throughout the industry as the UK’s leading staircase and door solution provider.

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As a highly reputable firm within the industry, Stairways are dedicated to meeting their client’s product and application requirements. All materials used are manufactured to the highest quality and meet the relevant standards achieving ISO9001, FSC®, and various product certifications, whilst their staircases and door solutions are manufactured with compliance to UK building regulations & legislative standards in mind. Using the knowledge, passion, and experience acquired across all team members over the past thirty years, Stairways aim to continue to be the best in what they do.


Stairways are continuously looking for opportunities to improve and expand their service offering; this includes the investment in new machinery to further enhance and innovate the manufacturing process, with the aim to shorten lead times and increase overall in-house capacity. The changes Stairways employ are always focused upon improving the customer experience, to ensure their process remains as efficient as possible from start to finish.


Privately owned and managed since it was founded in 1989, Stairways has grown to become one of the UK’s largest manufacturers of carpentry and joinery products. Starting as a small staircase manufacturer, Stairways now boast three state-of-art facilities that offer over 85,000 sq ft of bespoke and mass production capacity.