Which Fire Door Retainer

What is a battery operated fire door retainer? 

A independent review of the UK battery operated fire door retainer market by Kathy Wilman

Fire doors are a crucial part of the fire safety built environment. When a fire door is closed, it will slow the spread of smoke and fire in a building. Often fire doors are dangerously “wedged” open, leaving these doors open, helping the smoke and fire race through a building. The consequence can be catastrophic as smoke inhalation is the biggest killer in any fire.

A battery operated fire door retainer is a device designed to act as a door wedge, closing the fire door automatically when the fire alarm sounds.

This is an overview of the battery operated fire door retainers on the market in the UK. We have tested the performance of each product and given a product matrix based upon features.

Battery operated  fire door retainers in the market:

  • Shuttle Fire Door Retainer (Shuttle LCD and Shuttle Bug)
  • Dorgard and Dorgard Smartsound (doorguard)
  • Union DoorSense
  • Agrippa

Quick Product Review:

Shuttle: Smart technology, long battery life, slim design and outstanding features on both their versions.

Dorgard / Doorguard: Original battery operated door retainer. Old fashioned design but still works well. Batteries can drain quickly. Will react to other sounds like talking, music, vacuum cleaners.

Dorgard SmartSound: Smart listening, improved version of Dorgard. Ignores vacuums but still closes to some sounds. Longer battery life than original.

Union DoorSense: Basic fire door retainer. Very similar to the original Dorgard. Closes to all other sounds, including vacuum cleaners.

Agrippa: Smart fire door retainer. Listens to alarm, also designed as a magnet. Good product. Can only be used up against a wall. Good battery life. Which one should I buy?

Product Performance Matrix

Products Upto 4 year battery life Only closes to alarm Closes to other sounds LCD display Non-tamper Screws Works with ALL fire alarm types Holds Fire door open at any angle


Shuttle LCD Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes £120 – 150
Shuttle Bug Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes £80 -£120
Dorgard No No Yes No No No Yes £80-120
Dorgard Smartsound No No Yes No No No Yes £110-£130
Agrippa No Yes No Yes No No No £80-99
Union DoorSense No No Yes No No No Yes £80
  • All information based upon May 2021