The CE mark is a legal declaration by a manufacturer that a product complies with one or more European single market directives or regulations.

There are some two dozen of these, ranging from medical devices to toys. Products displaying the CE mark must be accepted on the market in all European countries (although national governments retain the ability to regulate how the products are used).

The principal measures of relevance to doors and hardware are the Construction Products Regulation 2011 (CPR) and the Machinery Directive 2006 (MD):

  • The CPR covers all construction products, but only if the product in question is covered by a “harmonised” European standard. Currently, this includes external hinged doorsets, industrial doors, garage doors and several hardware items intended for fire and emergency escape doors. Since July 2013, manufacturers have been required to apply the CE marking and issue a Declaration of Performance for each product. More recent standards including the standard for fire resisting doors, are in a ‘period of coexistence’ during which CE marking is voluntary.  CE marking for fire doors will become compulsory in November 2019; CE marking of internal pedestrian fire doorsets has, however, been delayed.
  • The MD covers only machines with a motor of some kind and this includes all powered doors and gates. Since the mid-1990s manufacturers of such products have been obliged to apply the CE marking and issue a Declaration of Conformity.

The CE mark provides evidence that a product meets relevant safety requirements and, in the case of the CPR, accessibility, sustainability and environmental protection requirements in addition.

The duty to apply the CE marking applies to the person placing the product on the European single market, usally the manufacturer.  The existence of the mark means that the product is free to circulate on the market.  In the case of construction, the legal duties of the builder are covered in national building regulation, not CE marking legislation.  A CE marked product that may be lawfully circulating on the European market, but this does not necessarily impy that it is suitable for use on a specific building project.  In order to assess this, it will be necessary to compare the product's declared performance with the requirements of local building regulations.