Monday, 10 February 2020 12:21

Different types of door closers & their role to enhance fire safety

For every building, it is of utmost importance to undertake adequate fire safety measures. Otherwise, precious lives will be endangered if any unfortunate fire breaks out. Installing fire doors in different parts of the building is one such measure to be undertaken without fail. It includes door closer. These are used mainly in public and commercial buildings. Door closers do have plenty of applications and uses. One major use is to keep the door closed and limit further spread of draught and fire throughout the building.

Know the types

Door closers are of different types and may range from simple gate spring to industrial floor springs. The automatic door closer does require power for optimum operation. On the other hand, manual door closer makes use of physical force. Three basic designs are available in the market, namely surface mounted, jamb mounted and overhead. The type to be concealed or installed on surface is referred to as overhead door closers. Again, installing them between doorframe and doors may conceal jamb mounted closers.

Door closer selection

There are several things to be taken into consideration when trying to choose a door closer. One major is the closer’s performance during fire situations. The others are durability, safety, aesthetics, vandalism and resistance towards opening forces and health.

  • Automatic door closers: Whenever any person comes in proximity to such doors, the doors tend to open up and close on its own. As the device finds it safe to close, it closes the doors. It is installed commonly in commercial buildings, hospitals and local authority buildings.
  • Electromagnetic hold-open door closer: An electromagnetic force is used to keep the door open. This closer type is connected to the fire alarm system of the building. One major advantage to install this type is that there is no need to use objects or wedges. The door closes as soon as there is raised a fire alarm. Electromagnetic free swing applies similar principle. However, rather than keeping it open, the door moves without any resistance. For commercial building entrance doors, there are used concealed fitting closers to serve functional role. It also helps to maintain the door’s aesthetic appearance. Also are available those which can be concealed into door’s top. ‘Hiding’ the closer can be great, it is necessary to cut large portion of the door to fit the body. It is likely to reduce the door’s fire integrity.
  • Overhead door closers: They are created with adjustable or different strengths. This is to cater for weight and size of door variations. Heaving & bigger the door, the more force will it require to close. To classify door closes, the recognized standard is by having the close assigned with numeric value. It is generally between 1 & 7, with higher number indicating greater force to close and larger capacity. For a fire door, 3 is the least recommended size of the door closer. Another consideration is air pressure from wind on door. It can lead to higher number size than actual door weight desired.

Therefore, getting to know the above can help choose the best and most appropriate door closer for the building.

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