The ADA Standards require accessible toilet compartment doors to be self-closing.

I’m finally writing this post so I can find the answer quickly next time…I swear, my coworker John Gant and I have talked about this at least a dozen times over the years.

Today’s Quick Question is this:

Are doors serving single occupancy restrooms required to have door closers (or spring hinges)?

In the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, Section 604.8.1.2 addresses the requirements for accessible toilet compartment doors.  This section states that these doors shall be self-closing.  This requirement is also found in Section 604.8.2.2 which covers doors for ambulatory accessible compartments.

So, what is a toilet compartment?  ADA Advisory 213.3.1 explains:  A toilet compartment is a partitioned space that is located within a toilet room, and that normally contains no more than one water closet. A toilet compartment may also contain a lavatory. A lavatory is a sink provided for hand washing. Full-height partitions and door assemblies can comprise toilet compartments where the minimum required spaces are provided within the compartment.

The ADA Standards do not specifically state that self-closing doors are required for single occupancy restrooms, but other codes, standards, guidelines, or laws may require closing devices on the doors serving these rooms.

A single occupancy restroom without toilet partitions creating a separate compartment would not be subject to the requirements of this section.  I know that there are some Board of Health requirements that mandate self-closing restroom doors under certain circumstances, but I have not seen a widespread requirement that applies to all locations in the U.S.

BUT – as I always remind iDigHardware readers and attendees of my classes, there are often state or local requirements that differ from the model codes and referenced standards.  Here is an example, from standards of the Massachusetts Architectural Access Board, 521 CMR:

Have you seen requirements for self-closing doors on single occupant restrooms in your area?  Please share them in the comments! 

When there isn’t a specific requirement, how do you decide whether to specify/install a closing device on an individual restroom door?  WWYD?

You need to login or register to bookmark/favorite this content.