We match your existing door and make sure it meets building code and life safety code requirements. More about Doors
Locks are such an everyday part of our lives that we sometimes take them for granted. Until they fail or are compromised. We want to help you find the hardware that is right for you when that happens. Or if you are ahead of the game and want to upgrade to better hardware, knowing the answers to the following questions can help us get what you need.
Commercial hardware requirements vary widely. We do have a few general recommendations.
- Stay with the architects’ hardware recommendations relating to the quality of hardware. If there is a Grade 1 lock on the door, then replace or add locks that are rated Grade 1.
- Be sure to use fire rated hardware on fire rated doors.
- Avoid modifying fire rated doors and frames in the field. There are limits to how much modification is acceptable. Keep in mind these doors have been tested to protect you in the case of fire. Cutting too much from the door/frame will destroy the UL listing on the door/frame and may increase your liabilities if someone is hurt or killed in a fire or additional property damage is caused by destroying the “fire wall” which the door/frame is a part of.
- Keep the “path of egress” clear. An exit sign over a door indicates single action egress is required. This means one motion to open the door, so you can’t add a second lock that requires additional actions to unlock the door.
- Building Codes and Life Safety Codes vary according to jurisdiction. The local AHJ (Authority Having Jurisdiction) must approve any variances from the local code. ALWAYS GET APPROVED VARIANCES IN WRITING.
Meeting your security needs requires we determine not only that we meet your needs related to burglary resistance, but that we meet the Life Safety and Building Codes, and provide a lock that meets your user needs.
A: How the lock will be used will determine the function of the lock. If you do not want to allow people to leave a door unlocked, then a store room function lock may meet your needs. If you want to control whether a door is locked or unlocked, then a vestibule function lock may be what is needed.
The following are common lock functions and a description of their features. Other functions exist and different manufacturers may have variations of the function name, but this should get you started.
- Entry function – Turn/push button locks or unlocks the outside handle. When locked, a key is required from the outside. Used on office doors.
- Storeroom function – Outside handle is fixed. Always requires a key from the outside. Inside is always free to exit. Used in many situations. Storage rooms, closets, bathrooms (may limit unauthorized use), and entrances to buildings or offices where keypads or cards are used for entry are all common uses for this type of lock.
- Vestibule function – This lock has a place to insert the key (a cylinder) on the inside and the outside. The inside handle is always free to exit. The inside cylinder controls whether the outside handle is free or requires a key to enter. Be sure the inside cylinder key is different from the outside cylinder key. Used when foot traffic needs to be controlled at different times of the day.
- Classroom function – The inside handle is always free. The outside cylinder, when operated by a key, will determine whether the outside handle is fixed or free. Used in schools. There is now a variation on this lock brought about by highly publicized school violence. The new version allows the teacher to lock the outside handle without stepping into the hallway.
- Privacy function – Push button locking. Often may be unlocked with a small screwdriver from the outside. For use on bedrooms and bathrooms.
- Passage function – The inside and outside handles are always free. Used on doors that must stay closed but not locked.
- Electrically Locked function – Inside handle is always free. Outside handle is continuously locked electrically. Unlocked by a switch or power failure. Used with a keypad or card system. There is also an electrically unlocked function. Where you use the lock and its relation to the Life Safety Code will determine whether you need the electrically locked or unlocked function.