Solid Core Doors

AUST: Solid core doors have been installed in buildings across Australia under previous regulation regimes in most states even before the Building Code of Australia (BCA) has nominated them as an essential safety measure by the building surveyor/building certifier. Each state has had various conditions for solid core doors use and in what type of building they can be installed. Solid core doors previous to the BCA, have been relied upon as part of the life safety elements installed in a building, and at times relied upon too much.

Building Code of Australia

The Building Code of Australia nominates solid core doors in two areas, Table I1.1 and Clause C3.11, although you may see solid core doors installed elsewhere in buildings other than those nominated in Clause C3.11, these installations would be under ‘alternative solutions’ allowed under the BCA.

The following extract shows situations where solid core doors are nominated in the Building Code of Australia.

Part extract of Clause C3.11: – (Building Construction)

C3.11 Bounding construction: Class 2, 3 and 4 buildings

  1. d) Protection for a doorway must be at least-

(i) in a building of Type A construction – a self-closing -/60/30 fire door; and
(ii) in a building of Type B or C construction – a self-closing, tight fitting, solid core doors, not less than 35 mm thick,

The following illustration depicts the requirements for solid core doors in a Class 3 aged-care building.

The following is a part extract of clause I1.1 for an Essential Safety Measure (as appeared in BCA 2013) known as solid core doors.

Table I1.1 SAFETY MEASURES – BUILDING FIRE INTEGRITY

Safety Measures BCA Provision for Determining Standard of Performance
Solid core doors and associated self-closing, automatic closing and latching mechanisms C3.11

Essential Safety Measures Audit – Solid Core Doors

Given that a lot of solid core doors exist in buildings prior to a number of state building regulations offering ‘specifications’ for their use, an essential safety measures auditor must endeavour to assess the ‘regulations’ applicable at the time of installation of solid core doors for ongoing inspection and recording in essential safety measures logbooks.

For solid core doors installed under recent regulatory control, these doors are deemed an essential safety measure and must comply with clause C3.11 (BCA) and inspected by an essential safety measures auditor to verify whether these conditions are being satisfied and recorded in the essential safety measures logbook to allow the signing of the Annual Statement, Annual Certificate Compliance, Annual Fire Safety Statement, Annual Maintenance Statement and Annual Occupiers Statement.