It is possible to repair fire doors in some cases, so why is the process of repairing one so tricky? Unlike with regular doors, you can't just find something that will cover up a hole in a fire door and make it look like it's in one piece. There are codes that govern those fire doors, and repairs risk reducing the fire doors' effectiveness if not done correctly. If a fire door has minor damage, a repair company may be able to fix it right up as long as the repairs meet requirements.
A Breach in the Door May Allow Sparks and Smoke Through
If a fire door is damaged and you don't want to replace it, you can't just leave it as damaged. Poorly done repairs and remaining damage may allow smoke and sparks to get through the door in a fire emergency, which is pretty much like not having a fire door to begin with. Repairs must ensure that smoke and sparks are not going to breach the door and enter the area that was supposed to be protected. Obviously, if flames reach that floor and are hot enough to exceed the fire door's ratings (which are actually in minutes and not degrees, but the heat of the flames plays a role in getting past those ratings), then smoke and sparks may get into the area. But the door should be able to exclude anything cooler than the door's rating, and repairs have to be done very well to meet that standard.
Repairs Need to Bring the Entire Door Back Into Compliance
You could have a repair done that, by luck, closes up all gaps and appears to be sturdy enough to fend off smoke and flame intrusion. But that's not enough. The repair materials themselves, after the repair is done, have to meet fire codes and ratings — not just close up gaps enough to exclude flames and smoke. That means using specific materials and specific processes to complete the repairs. In other words, you can't go do this yourself; you need a repair company authorized to repair fire doors to handle the work.
Repaired Fire Doors Need to Meet Current Codes
It gets better: The repaired fire door needs to meet current fire standards. If you have a very old fire door that was damaged, the repair person has to determine if the door meets current requirements. If it doesn't, you could be looking at a replacement instead of a repair. If it does still meet requirements, then the repair can take place.
Unless you've been trained to repair fire doors, you're not going to be able to determine any of these, and neither will a regular contractor who works only on plain doors. You need to call a company that offers fire door repairs in order to determine if the door can be repaired, and if so, how.
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