I know I just mentioned bathroom door hardware yesterday so maybe this will be the start of another series. 🙂
Almost every week someone asks me about the use of deadbolts on bathroom doors, often because they want to use an indicator deadbolt, like the Falcon D271 (right). I saw an application recently at Harvard, so the last time I went in for a meeting I waited until the coast was clear and whipped out my camera.
In my opinion, using a deadbolt on a door with push/pull hardware is code-compliant. There may be facilities where you shouldn’t give the public control over locking a door (ie. a multi-stall school bathroom), but the door in the photos is a single bathroom in an administration building.
There’s no egress problem here because it requires one motion to release the latch (turning the thumbturn). There isn’t an accessibility issue because the thumbturn can be operated with one hand and without grasping, tight pinching, or twisting of the wrist. This isn’t a fire-rated door, which would require positive latching, and it’s obviously not an occupancy that would require panic hardware. If there was an existing latchset, adding the indicator deadbolt would be an additional motion required for egress, so that would create a code issue on most occupancy types.
And an item of interest to be filed under the “green building” category (or possibly the “TMI” category), these flushing instructions were posted in the bathroom.