Expensive and portable tech, car keys, bank cards and even correspondence from which thieves can harvest data are all lucrative reasons for the criminal fraternity to keep developing techniques for breaking into others’ homes. To help protect home owners and tenants, the Government introduced Approved Document Q: Security, Dwellings in 2015 — statutory building regulations guidance which outlines the standards required for doors and windows in new properties to protect the occupier from the threat of burglary.
To comply with Document Q, doors installed in new homes must pass PAS 24 testing, a rigorous testing process that requires the fully-finished door, including all hardware and locks, to withstand attempt to gain access. Builders’ merchants need to be certain that all doors being sold to customers have passed these rigorous tests, and UAP states it is working collaboratively with door manufacturers to help them pass first time, helping them get products to market faster and more cost-effectively.
Barry Halpin, Sales Director at UAP, explained: “Mandatory testing is integral to product development costs for door manufacturers, and any door that does not pass first time must be re-tested until it meets the required standard. Consequently, any element of the door that does not pass, no matter what it might be, can cause the whole door to fail, incurring the costs associated with re-testing and delays in bringing the finished door to market.
“UAP’s approach is to work in partnership with door manufacturers to provide a complete set of door hardware and the locking system, combining products that have already undergone substantial testing and quality assurance, to enable a first time pass for newly developed doors. We also ensure that the hardware we provide delivers a co-ordinated aesthetic, aligned to the design of the door, and provide full technical support and guidance during production selection, installation and throughout the testing process.”
One of the UK door manufacturers that has benefitted from this approach is PDS Doorsets, a specialist in composite doors and fire doors for residential properties. UAP supports PDS’ R&D and testing regimes by providing complete sets of hardware as test samples, including Fullex multipoint locks TS008 Soterian letterplates, Duo door handles and Kinetica 3* cylinders.
For fire door products, UAP provides locks and hardware from its Firemongery range of fire safety products, which have already been thoroughly tested and certified for fire-rated installations.
Ben Davies, Testing Compliance Manager at PDS, said: “The hardware elements installed in a door are often the most vulnerable points for burglars seeking to gain access. While the lock is the obvious focus for security, the letterplate and other fixtures could also be a potential weakness.
“When we work with UAP, we are dealing with a company that has worked in the sector for 25 years and is constantly investing in new product development. PAS 24 involves destructive testing, so having a partner that will provide us with enough complete sets of samples to put the required number of doors through their paces to prove compliance is a big help. It also means we can be confident of avoiding spiralling costs and delays due to re-testing.”
The PAS 24 testing process includes scrutiny of both robust door fabrication and the hardware. The test procedures include a manipulation test and a security hardware and cylinder test. This includes attempts to remove, dislodge or gain access to the cylinder, attempts to break or defeat the cylinder by applying a twisting or bending force and, should access to the internal workings of the cylinder be achieved, it also includes attempts to defeat the lock and gain access by operating any accessible mechanism.
The door furniture and cylinder also have to remain intact and firmly fixed in place during a series of loading and impact tests designed to ensure the door can withstand various forms of attack.
UAP also provides products, support and guidance to door manufacturers in preparation for fire door testing, offering complete sets of hardware samples for the tests along with the company’s expertise. This includes UAP’s TS008 compliant Soterian letterplates, which includes Certifire certified products designed specifically for use in fire doors, along with its Firemongery range of Document Q compliant fire rated hardware.
Barry Halpin added: “The boom in multi-occupancy residential developments and student accommodation means there is an increasing demand for domestic fire doors and our range is designed to prevent fire and smoke from spreading into individual dwellings from common areas, as well as the other way around.
“Certifire approved TS008 letterplates can be fitted to timber fire doors with no further testing, whereas composite or steel fire doors must be tested as part of a complete door configuration prior to approval of the door’s fire rating. Consequently, timber fire doors and the Certifire approved Soterian TS 008 letterplate are an ideal combination for sale through the builders’ merchant channel.”
UAP has launched a complete range of fire door products designed to help customers select the right certified solutions in three easy steps. Released under the Firemongery brand, the portfolio includes fully-tested and certified ironmongery and locking products for use in compliant fire door installation.
The new range is designed specifically for builders’ merchants, trade counters and wholesalers as a complete solution, with a fully-stocked POS (point of sale) unit. The unit features a unique ‘Pack Selector’ decision tree, providing customers with all the information they need to select and purchase the right items, and UAP has also created an interactive Pack Selector tool for the range on the company’s website. Restocking across the range is available with next day delivery.
David Jennings, CEO of UAP, said: “Whether a builder is installing fire doors across several properties or a homeowner is upgrading a single door, ensuring that the ironmongery meets both the relevant compliance requirements and the practical needs of the occupier is very important. This range has been developed as a pick-up-and-go solution for builder’s merchant environments, with ‘right first time’ product selection. The accompanying POS is both eye-catching and informative to help customers and attract sales.”