What Is Commercial Door Hardware
Commercial door hardware consists of the parts and components on exterior or interior doors in a commercial building. There are many different types of commercial doors, from hollow metal doors, to storefront doors, or solid core wood doors, and each door type varies in the type of commercial door hardware required.
The Difference Between Commercial Door Hardware and Regular Door Hardware
Commercial door hardware varies from residential or standard door hardware due to it's performance and durability. For one, commercial doors are typically high traffic doors. Therefore it requires commercial and industrial grade door hardware that will be able to handle the excessive door use. The second notable difference is commercial door hardware is tested and graded by ANSI (American National Standards Institute) to provide professionals and end users information on the performance and longevity of the door hardware. All commercial door hardware is either ANSI Grade 1 or 2 and have been cycle tested to ensure quality. Other organizations also regulate commercial door hardware such as ADA (Americans With Disabilities Act), NFPA (National Fire Protection Association), and others, all to guarantee the safety of pedestrians using the commercial door hardware.
5 Main Types Of Commercial Door Hardware
No matter your commercial door type, all commercial door hardware can be categorized in five main categories:
Hardware To Control The Commercial Door
Hardware used to control the commercial door refers to commercial door hardware devices that controls the swing and speed of the door as it opens or closes. Door control hardware includes commercial door closers, low energy automatic door openers, overhead door holders, commercial door stops, and more.
Hardware To Secure The Commercial Door
The hardware to secure the commercial door refers to commercial door hardware devices used lock the door. Commercial security door hardware include cylindrical lever locks, cylindrical knob locks, deadbolts, exit devices, magnetic locks, electric strike locks, and more.
Hardware To Hang The Commercial Door
Hardware to hang the commercial door includes any commercial door hardware device used to pivot the door. Commercial swing door hardware includes commercial door butt hinges, commercial door continuous hinges, and commercial door pivots.
Hardware To Seal The Commercial Door
Hardware to seal the commercial door is any weather stripping or gasket used to insulate the door. Commercial door seals include commercial door sweeps, commercial door astragals, commercial door frame gaskets, and more.
Hardware To Protect The Commercial Door
Hardware to protect the commercial door includes any kind of commercial door hardware used to prevent damage to the door. This includes commercial door kick plates, commercial door armor plates, commercial door push plates, commercial door pull plates, and more.
Common Parts Of A Commercial Door
The illustration below depicts examples of the 5 main types of commercial door hardware. In this example, the hardware that controls the door is a commercial door closer. The hardware that hangs the door are three ball bearing hinges. The hardware that seals the door is the bottom commercial door sweep and saddle threshold. The door hardware that protects the door is a commercial kick plate. The door hardware that secures the door is a lever handle lock and a panic bar.
Commercial Door Hardware Grades
The American National Standards Institute, also known as ANSI, provides tests, characteristics, and standards to define the performance of commercial door hardware. ANSI standards provides grades which signify to the building owner or contractor the operation, cycle, and overall strength of the commercial door hardware. Commercial door hardware that is grade 1 is the best quality and longest lasting door hardware, while grade 2 is identified as commercial door hardware that is still great quality, but has not reached as many door cycles as grade 1. Grade 3 door hardware is identified as lower quality residential door hardware.
Commercial Door Hardware Requirements
Commercial doors must abide by a variety of laws, codes, as well as national and local jurisdictions in order to meet compliance and guarantee safety for all people in the building.
National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Commercial Door Hardware Requirements
If a commercial door is a fire door (located on a commercial building's fire wall), then under the requirements set forth by the NFPA, all commercial door hardware must also be fire rated. This includes everything from the door closer, hinges, kick plates, lever handles, and more.
Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Commercial Door Hardware Requirements
Many individuals have heard of ADA or the Americans With Disabilities Act. However, most do not realize that importance of it, or that it is a federal law. The ADA was put in to place to help prevent discrimination against people with disabilities. In the commercial door industry this means entrance and exit doors must be ADA compliant. ADA guidelines outline the requirements of ADA compliant commercial door hardware that should be installed on commercial doors, as well as operation requirements. Examples of ADA compliant door hardware include ADA door closers, ADA lever handles, ADA kick plates, ADA pull handles, and more.
American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association (BHMA) Commercial Door Hardware Requirements
Both of these associations work together to provide requirements for commercial door hardware used in buildings. The durability of commercial door hardware is expressed by a hardware grade and safety requirements regarding the installation, operation, and function of the commercial door hardware is also specified. All door hardware installed on commercial doors should conform to ANSI/BHMA standards including door closer, door hinges, door locks, automatic door openers, exit devices, and more.
International Building Code (IBC) Commercial Door Hardware Requirements
The IBC provides an assortment of codes such as structural, fire, and life safety requirements for commercial doors and their hardware in buildings. All commercial door hardware in buildings should comply with IBC codes.
Additional commercial door hardware requirements can exist depending on the location of the commercial building. Always consult your local jurisdiction and authorities to ensure full compliance.
Commercial Door Hardware Applications
It goes without saying that commercial door hardware should be used on all commercial doors, however, here are some examples of commercial buildings with doors that should be fitted with commercial grade hardware:
- Hospitals, Dental Offices, Outpatient Services
- Banks, Loan Offices
- Retail Stores, Department Stores, Mom and Pop Stores
- Government Buildings, Social Service Buildings, Courthouse Buildings
- Elementary Schools, Middle Schools, High Schools, Community Colleges, Universities
- And More!
Commercial Door Hardware Storefront Compatibility
Storefront doors also sometimes referred to as commercial glass doors are used as entrance doors for all major retail stores and department stores. These doors feature commercial grade door hardware. Below is a list of storefront door manufacturers that we can supply replacement and compatible commercial door hardware for:
Commercial Hollow Metal Steel Door Compatibility
Commercial steel doors are used as security doors, entrance doors, and emergency exit doors for all building types including retail stores, healthcare facilities, and other institutions. Below is a list of commercial steel door manufacturers that we can supply replacement and compatible commercial door hardware for:
Commercial Wood Door Compatibility
Commercial wood doors are used for almost all interior doors inside of commercial buildings like retail stores, schools, healthcare facilities, and more. Below is a list of commercial wood door manufacturers that we can supply replacement and compatible commercial door hardware for:
Frequently Asked Questions
Which Is The Common Commercial Hardware Lockset?
A Grade 1 commercial door cylindrical lever lockset is the most commonly used door lock. Commercial doors, especially entry doors, can have thousands of pedestrians using the doorway each day. ANSI grade 1 lever locks are tested for over 800,000 cycles, ensuring the best durability and performance.
Which Grade Commercial Door Hardware Is Best?
ANSI commercial grade 1 hardware is always the best and also indicates the longest door cycle testing. ANSI grade 2 hardware is next best, while ANSI grade 3 hardware is only recommended on residential doors.
What's The Difference Between Grade 2 and Grade 3 Hardware?
ANSI grade 2 rated commercial door hardware has been cycle tested and very durable. Grade 2 commercial door hardware can be installed on standard weight and regular traffic commercial doors. Grade 3 rated door hardware however is cycle tested for very low frequency and light weight doors. As a result, grade 3 door hardware is only recommended for residential light weight doors.
What Does BHMA Certified Mean?
BHMA stands for Builder Hardware Manufacturer's Association. They work along side ANSI (American National Standards Institute) to provide door hardware specifications and requirements. As a result, all commercial door hardware installed in a building should conform to BHMA and ANSI standards.