What about Flood Doors?
Flood doors sound like a great idea don't they?
Just fit them to replace your current door and never worry about flooding again - just close the door and you're safe!
Unfortunately it's not that simple. Here are a few reasons why:
1. Reliability. Most flood doors only offer a 1 or 2 year manufacturer's warranty. There's a reason for that - the flood doors have complex mechanisms and the door gets used every day - not just when there's a flood. Wear and tear builds up quickly. If you want a flood door please take the warranty period seriously, and think of that as a limit not a minimum.
2. Cost. Flood doors are expensive because they are large and complex. Manufacturers have to make them in all sizes and colours because they are on permanent display on your home and customers want them to look good and work well. With a short warranty the cost per year of having a flood door is high. We don't think most of them are value for money.
3. Safety. If there's an emergency (say a medical emergency) and someone needs to get in or out of the house during a flood, you have a problem. If you open the door you let in the water, of course, and you let it in under pressure. This can cause damage and injury. Alternatively, access to the home has to be via a window, which can also be risky (if a resident has been taken seriously ill you don't want to be man-handling them through a window).
4. Effectiveness. Despite many flood doors on the UK market having a BSI Kitemark this does not mean they are leakproof. A Kitemark only signifies that the product lets in less than half a litre of water per hour. In our experience flood doors are at the unacceptably leaky end of the market. If you have 2 external doors then that's up to a litre per hour coming into your home. Unless you are in the house mopping out that could do a lot of damage if the flood lasts for days or even weeks. And if you remain in the house you may be trapped there if you can't open the doors!
What if it's the only option?
There are some circumstances where a flood door is the only viable solution. For example in 'flash flood' areas where water diversion is not an affordable option. But if you are considering one then our advice is to ask to see the Kitemark results of different models before you make your choice.
When we are asked to recommend or fit a flood door our chosen make is Stormmeister - due to its 10 year lifespan. However please note it does not have a BSI Kitemark.