What are the required opening speed, closing speed, and hold-open time for a low-energy automatic operator? What about a vestibule situation with sequential operation?
How do you provide the required standby power for an automatic operator if there isn't building-wide backup power? WWYD?
Does the vision light height requirement apply to automatic doors as well as manually-operated doors?
My next article for Door Security + Safety Magazine addresses the signage required for automatic doors. It will appear in the April edition.
Animals + automatic doors...what could be better on a Wordless Wednesday? Ok - I can think of a few things that might be better, but check these out anyway...
We could soon see a code change that would require automatic operators for public entrances. Here's the current status.
I recently came across an app that literally "opens doors" for people who have disabilities that make it difficult or impossible to initiate an automatic door by pushing an actuator.
While this may seem like a great idea at first glance - a wireless actuator mounted on the door to open the door automatically - this does not meet the recommended guidelines for actuator location.
Questions continue to arise regarding how to properly specify/supply hardware for a single restroom door with an automatic operator. The challenge is that the outside actuator (push button) for the automatic operator has to be interfaced with the locking system; otherwise, the actuator could open the door even when the restroom is occupied.
This article addresses an important change to the BHMA standards for automatic doors operated by a motion sensor or control mat...
The codes and standards limit the opening force for interior, non-fire-rated, manually-operated doors to 5 pounds, hence the question...
In yesterday's post, I wrote about power-assist operators to clarify that these are not the same as low-energy automatic operators. This 2-part question arose from a misconception that "power-assist" is the same thing as "Push 'N Go."
This is Part 1 of a 2-part question, so check tomorrow's post for Part 2. First, I'd like to clarify what defines a power-assist operator...
I'm in Guatemala! I'm on the hunt for some beautiful and/or interesting Guatemalan doors to share with you, but until then, here are some doors from a recent trip to Phoenix...
Even though automatic operators have been available from LCN for longer than I can remember, I still get questions about which one to use where, why to choose one over the other, and pneumatic vs. electric operation...
Are automatic operators required by the ADA Standards and ICC A117.1 - the predominate accessibility standards used in the US?
The doors have some obvious damage caused by carts contacting the push side face, and carts hitting the door edge when it's open. So...WWYD?
I received today's Wordless Wednesday photo along with the following explanation..."On a service call to find out why doors will not lock and had to follow the wires to the inspirational message left by the last technician in header."
The proposed solution for an auto operator on an arched door is shown below the photo, but I'm wondering if there are more aesthetically-pleasing options. WWYD?
If an automatic operator is properly coordinated so the latch is released when the actuator is pressed, only the signage required by the BHMA standard should be needed. This is an accident waiting to happen.
Deputy Jeff Tock of Allegion sent me this photo, showing some confusing signage on an automatic door (push to operate an outswinging door?) - which reminded me that it's been years since I've written about the signage requirements for low-energy automatic doors...
If a low-energy operator is actuated by a motion sensor, it has to meet the requirements of A156.10 instead of A156.19, which usually means the door must have guide rails and safety sensors. What about the "wave-to-open" switches...are these considered motion sensors?
Do you have questions about low-energy automatic operators or the standards that apply to them? Maybe this will help...
Sort of like the chicken and the egg, this Fixed-it Friday photo from Steve Turner and Ray Valentine of Precision Doors & Hardware made me wonder...was the closer added because the automatic operator wasn't closing the door properly, or was the automatic operator added because the closer required too much opening force? Or one or the other stopped working completely but was not removed?
It's been a really long time since I posted a collection of reader photos because I've been using a lot of these submissions for Wordless Wednesday and Fixed-it Friday. Here are some of the reader photos that have been patiently waiting in my inbox...
I was a Lego Robotics coach last year, and we barely got our robot to knock down the cups in the maze. This Fixed-it Friday video of a Lego Mindstorm automatic door operator is impressive...
When you have a pressurized stairwell that is required for smoke control, the increased pressure in the stairwell makes doors swinging into the stair more difficult to open, and doors swinging out of the stair may not close and latch. WWYD?
The 2010 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Standards for Accessible Design went into effect in March of 2012, but there are several requirements that continue to surprise architects and specifiers as well as door and hardware suppliers. These issues can be costly to resolve if they’re discovered after the doors and hardware are on-site, so it’s important to stay current on the requirements...
Thank you to Tim Meegan of Doors Incorporated for today's Fixed-it Friday photo! It's a classic! In case anyone is wondering, this article talks about the mounting guidelines for auto operator actuators!
The 2010 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Standards for Accessible Design went into effect in March 2012, but there are several requirements that continue to surprise architects and specifiers...
This video is pretty amazing. Swallows nesting in a university parking garage could have been locked in when doors were added to convert the garage to the campus bike center. Is this an example of the swallows' intelligence, or dumb luck?...
I know what you're thinking..."When is she going to stop talking about Nashville and get on to something interesting like gasketing or clear opening width?" :D
A couple of months ago I wrote an article for Doors & Hardware, which appears in the September issue. As always, I triple-checked my sources, and confirmed that 2007 was the most current edition of A156.19 - American National Standard For Power Assist and Low Energy Power Operated Doors. Well, today a notification regarding the brand new 2013 edition showed up in my inbox! Luckily, there are not a lot of changes that would impact the article.
This post was printed in the September 2013 issue of Doors & Hardware
This photo, taken at an Ontario Hospital, was sent by Kelly Chimilar of Allmar. I'm confused.
Today is the 3rd anniversary of iDigHardware (aka iHateHardware)! WOOHOOOO!!!
This post was printed in the August 2011 issue of Doors & Hardware
Here's the latest batch of reader photos...don't forget to send me any interesting doors you see on your summer vacations!
Here's another interesting application that I saw at Foxwoods. These plastic covers were on all of the automatic operator actuators in the conference center.
Since it's one hour until Friday and I've had a very long week trying to catch up from being on vacation, here's some door-humor (yes, really). It's an automatic door on the Columbia University Physics building. The auto operator was being replaced with an LCN Senior Swing, but the installers were struggling through the installation without a wiring diagram, which can be extremely tough if there's other hardware involved. I feel a site visit coming on.
Last night I went to a presentation at one of our 3 local middle schools, which I'm guessing was built in the 70's. What struck me right away was that the exterior doors are all about 10' tall, and the interiors are about 9' with a transom panel above. What a strange application for a school. They still seem to be working pretty well though.
It seems like I should know all about myself now that I'm in my (early!) 40's, but I recently learned that the way I learn best is from a live demonstration or a video. As soon as I start trying to read about something, my mind is off in a hundred directions, but put the same information in a video and I'm right there.
The 2007 edition of ANSI/BHMA A156.19 - American National Standard for Power Assist and Low Energy Power Operated Doors requires low energy operators to be initiated by a "knowing act", which is described as "consciously initiating the powered opening of a low-energy door using acceptable methods, including: wall- or jamb-mounted contact switches such as push plates; fixed non-contact switches; the action of manual opening (pushing or pulling) a door; and controlled access devices such as keypads, card readers, and key switches."
Door opening force is the measurement of how many pounds of force are required to open a door. The requirements for door opening force are found in the Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG), ICC/ANSI A117.1 Standard on Accessible and Usable Buildings and Facilities, and the Massachusetts Architectural Access Board requirements (521 CMR).