Today’s post from Mark Kuhn addresses an interesting application that I hadn’t thought about before – a combination of electrified hardware and a key-operated lock on the same door.  I’d love to hear opinions from readers on this…


Here’s a sample of a typical conversation I have with Lori…

Me: “Look at this crazy door application.”

Lori: “That would make a good iDigHardware post.”

Recently the subject was doors to which more than one egress code apply.

I was writing a hardware specification for a jewelry store, which is not normally a very complicated (or even interesting) project to specify. But this jewelry store must have had issues in the past and they were looking for a solution.

Below is a snippet of the plans showing the doors in question:

DOOR A: They want to control entry, allowing one patron at a time through the door, but must also allow free egress. This was done with electromagnetic locks released by a sensor, as covered in the 2021 IBC, Section 1010.2.12.  Those of you who are familiar with this code know that we can lock an egress with a mag-lock if we meet ALL of the criteria stated in the code:

  • Have a sensor which releases the mag-lock as someone approaches the door on the egress side (free egress at all times)
  • Have a secondary “request-to-exit” button release the mag-lock (in case the sensor fails) for a minimum of 30 seconds, independent of the access control system
  • Have the fire alarm release the mag-lock
  • Have loss of power release the mag-lock

The term “loss of power” is what gave the owner heartburn, as they didn’t want the store unlocked during a power outage. So they asked if they could put an additional lock on the door to lock the store after hours. We know that according to IBC-2021, Section 1010.2.4, Item 3, we are permitted to lock this door with a key operated locking device (AKA double cylinder deadbolt) provided it meets the requirements in Item 3:

  • The locking device is readily distinguishable as locked

The question is…can I apply both IBC-2021, Section 1010.2.12 and Section 1010.2.4 to the same door?

After reading both codes thoroughly, I couldn’t find anything that would prohibit this application…what do you think?

The Plot Thickens….

Let’s not forget DOOR B: They want to not only control entry through this door BUT they want to also control egress through this door (RED FLAG!!!). Lucky for the owner, according to IBC-2021, Section 1010.2.13, we can do this with a delayed egress lock (in a Group M-mercantile occupancy). In this case we used a delayed egress mag-lock.

So if you want to shop at this store, You will first be “buzzed-in” through Door A and then be “buzzed-in” through Door B. (Yes, I still use the term “buzzed-in”!) And when you’re all done shopping and ready to leave the store, an employee will use a remote release button to allow you to exit through Door B without the 15-second delay, and then you can freely exit through Door A. HOWEVER, if you try to leave without authorization, you will be delayed at Door B for 15 seconds while an alarm sounds, giving the armed guard who also works at this store time to intervene.

By the way, the other place we typically (and more frequently) see this type of controlled entry/exit is at marijuana dispensaries.

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