Did you know that if you buy commercial doors with standard or budget door closers simply changing to a higher specification and better quality door closer can resolve many site issues, as well as helping you meet current Building Regulations and Standards?
If you buy-in commercial doors from a trade manufacturer how do you know whether the commercial door closer will be the right one? You can take our survey and find out!
Today, you have a huge choice of door closers.
What you may not know is that there are many different brands of door closers. Trade manufacturers of commercial doors, will of course aim to give you a quality door closer. It is already well known that cheap door closers whilst keeping the cost of the overall door product down, must also be reliable. The manufacturer will want to avoid having to provide replacements and you as an installer will want to avoid the service calls.
On this website, you will find a lot of content regarding compliance to current Building Regulations and the Equality Act. This is a legal framework and not simple recommendations or good working practices. With the door closer being a key component of a commercial door how do you know you are providing the right one?
Next time you order a commercial door, are you being provided with the right closer?
With concealed overhead closers, also known as transom closers, these are generally available in a variety of strengths. The typical manufacturer of commercial doors will choose the right strength closer to match the overall size of the door they are required to make, and in most cases this is deemed as being sufficient. Those of you that are already installing commercial doors will know on site whether the door is easy to open and close with that strength of door closer. It is important to remember that typical door closers are fixed in their strength. This means a Strength 3 closer is fixed at that tension and there is no adjustment.
Where your door closer could cause you problems.
With doors that are being installed in nursery schools, old peoples homes or shops, you may have experienced the owner of the building calling you back and commenting that the door is hard to operate for some users. What was your solution? In most cases your response was to either say that the door closer strength was correct for the size of door or you may have replaced the door closer with a weaker strength one. If you opted to change the door closer, this cost your company money in labour, parts, fuel and administration.
What your trade manufacturer of doors can’t know.
With most door installers choosing to buy unglazed doors from their door manufacturer, typically they will be provided with the glass sizes by the manufacturer to order their toughened glass units. What your door supplier won’t know is what glass you are fitting in that door. Laminated glass is much heavier than toughened and adds to the overall weight of the door and it’s ease of use. This puts extra strain on the door closer.
Door handles are another component that can affect the operation of your door. With many doors now being fitted with full height stainless steel handles on both sides, these are solid and heavy handles. The weight of the hardware and combined with the glass weight all add to the overall weight of the door that the closer needs to control.
Even if your doors are being fitted to a new or existing lobby, air pressure can also affect the door closer operation and add to the tension that is felt with that door is opened or closed.
So how can you make sure your door closer takes all these factors into consideration?
The simple answer is, unless you do all the necessary calculations beforehand, it is highly unlikely you can know on a completed and installed door whether the standard door closer that has been provided with your door is the right strength and taking into consideration the glass, hardware, air pressure and weatherstrips on a door.
Those technically minded can consult with torque curves, glass weight calculations, obtain the weight of their chosen door handles and even conduct air pressure calculations. The simple fact is nobody will do this. They will simply order a commercial door using a standard order form. The trade manufacturer will expect you to provide them with the information they require to make your door and you expect your door manufacturer to provide you with the right product.
Even if you are ordering a glazed and complete product, it is unlikely your door supplier will carry out those calculations for you.
So what about a door closer with adjustable power and strength?
The DORMA RTS87 Profile Transom Closer is one product that has adjustable power from Strength 1 up to Strength 4. This means there is one door closer whereby you can adjust the power on site and following installation that will take into account the above factors your door manufacturer won’t reasonably consider.
This adjustable door closer whilst costing more than your typical door closer will overcome these issues without the need to replace the closer body where you discover the standard closer provided does not produce an easy to open door nor one that can help to meet the required opening forces of Approved Document M and BS8300.
Why is this important?
The first advantage is that with an adjustable strength closer, you will not have to have the inconvenience and extra cost of going to site to to change your closer body again for a weaker or stronger model. This is an advantage for a door installer and keeping good will with your customers.
Where many ignore the current Building Regulations and Accessibility requirements, this is one door closer that can help comply by simply adjusting the opening and closing forces to meet your requirements. The door closer is also CE Marked and meets BS EN 1154. BS EN 1154 the British and European Standard on correct product type for use, testing, product performance standards, corrosion resistance and other factors that is a current standard in use today.
So next time you order a commercial door, why not pay a little extra for a better quality closer that has more features, will reduce site issues and help you comply with current legislation. SAPA Building Systems and AluK Systems are two systems companies that presently offer commercial door systems using a high-quality door closer.