What to look for when choosing a composite fire door

The internet is awash with manufacturers, installers and ‘experts’ citing different test standards and accreditations.  Scott Francis, Technical Manager at Bowater Doors unpicks this information and explains what you should look for when choosing a composite fire door.

Look for the latest standard – BS EN 1634

BS EN 1634 is the latest standard for fire resistance and smoke control and is accepted in Approved Document B, the fire safety element of the Building Regulations in England.

It’s a far more demanding test in comparison to the old BS 476 standard. This is particularly in reference to the requirement to expose both sides of the door to the fire combined with the increased level of pressure and heat in the furnace.  We made the decision to test our doors to the limits with regards to safety and security to ensure we are offering the best composite fire door on the market.

Look for Q-MARK certifications

BM TRADA is a UKAS accredited certification body that provides independent third-party certification services for the manufacture, installation and maintenance of fire doors. Those who join are showing their commitment to raising standards throughout the lifetime of a fire door.

Q -Mark Fire Door Manufacturer Certification Scheme

For reassurance and peace of mind, specifiers and buyers should look for Q mark accredited fire door manufacturers who have committed to improving the quality of fire doors with regular third-party audits, ongoing test evidence, consistent quality and compliance.

Bowater Doors are members of the Q Mark certification to offer additional peace of mind to our customers that our products are regularly checked by a third-party organisation to ensure dependable quality and performance.

Q-Mark Fire Door Installation Scheme

The installation of the doorset is equally as important as the stringent testing and manufacturing process. To ensure consistency, Bowater Doors recommend that the installer should also be a member of the Q Mark fire door installation scheme to ensure compliance throughout the supply and installation of the product.

Q-Mark Fire Door Maintenance Certification Scheme

Composite doors are known for their low maintenance properties; however, Fire doors do require periodic maintenance to ensure that they continue to offer the life-saving capabilities as promised by the manufacturer. Choosing low-maintenance composite fire doors like FireShield offers the potential to reduce repair and replacement costs and provide minimal disruption to the occupants.

The Door slab

Agrifiber core door slabs offer an environmentally friendly ‘green building product’ made from straw and wood fibres that are bonded and sealed using MDI (Isocyanate resin). It provides an incredibly strong, durable, stable and fire-resistant core in comparison to phenolic foam alternatives.

The Frame

Look for a fire door that features a frame that has been designed with a focus on fire protection.  FireShield is supplied with a fully finished and independently tested frame that has been designed specifically for use with fire doors.

Fire Door Identification

As part of the Q-Mark manufacturer scheme, all fire doors leaving the Bowater Doors factory are fitted with a physical plug fixed into the door to classify the period of fire integrity, the type of door and a unique company number to identify Bowater Doors as the manufacturer.


Keeping residents safe is a key driver for the development of our new range of composite fire doors and this also included achieving PAS 24 and Secured by Design accreditations. It was also fire tested with an AV2 slam shut lock to ensure that when the door was closed it was secure and ready to perform in the event of a fire when not in use.

In Summary

Bowater Doors is a Q Mark certified manufacturer of composite fire doors and can be trusted to supply the consistent quality and performance required to stop the passage of fire and smoke.

Bowater Doors support all aspects of the Fire Door Q Mark Certification Scheme and will continue to build safety and security into all our products.

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