Low energy power door operators are becoming a necessity for specific applications within commercial, medical and educational facilities. The low energy power operator “levels the field”, enabling those unable to physically open a door to gain access and egress.
Low Energy Power Door Operators must comply with ANSI/ BHMA A156.19 standard. The latest changes to be adopted are in the ANSI/ BHMA A156.19 - 2007 Standard for Low Energy Power Operated Doors. which directly affects locksmiths who install these power door operators. In the 2007 Standard there is an important change. This change is that low energy power door operators must be activated by a “knowing act” device. A “knowing act” device requires the person wanting access to perform a physical action. This includes pushing or pulling on the door as well as pressing a push paddle, center actuating column, exit device or a fixed non-contact switch. Also included are controlled access devices including key switches, keypads and card readers.
Note: A motion detector is not permitted as an activating device for a low energy door operator.
The California Building Code (CBC) 2007 under 1133B.2.5 Exceptions part C, makes an additional requirement for controlling powered doors. “Powered doors shall be controlled on both the interior and the exterior sides of the door by sensing devices, push plates, vertical actuation bars or other similar operating devices complying with Section 1117B.6.
“At each location where push plates are provided there shall be two push plates; the centerline of one push plate shall be 7 inches minimum and 8 inches maximum above the floor or ground surfaces and the centerline of the second push plate shall be 30 inches minimum and 44 inches maximum above the floor or ground surface. Each push plate displaying International Symbol of Accessibility per CBC Figure 11B-6(b).”
For this article, I was invited to observe the retrofit installation of a Norton 5900 Series X-in onto the corridor doorway of a handicap designated hospital room. The X-in is a motor driven, geared powered operator. To provide back up closing, a built-in spring winds up as door opens and closes an open door if power is extinguished.
The 5900 Series low energy X-in door operator is available for either push or pull side mounting and satisfies the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The Norton X-in can accommodate up to a 200-pound door that has a width up to 48”. Because the doorway is recessed into a passageway, an auxiliary stop will be mounted onto the wall.
The chosen doorway is into a hospital patient room configured to accommodate the needs of a physically handicapped individual.
The previous installation had flexible conduit running from the ceiling into a slot cut in the cover of the door operator to provide power and the wiring to the Unlatch and the push plates. Because this is a hospital, no changes can be made without notifying the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) and obtaining a permit and inspection for any changes to the electrical run. For this reason, the flexible conduit power run remained unchanged with the Norton X-in installation.
The existing installation had a four-inch push plate on the exterior side and the interior side of the door. In addition, a Securitron Cylindrical Lock Unlatch® Strike was installed into the strike opening. The Unlatch can operate on 24VDC at 40mA at rest, 200mA during operation with a 1-1/2 Amp in-rush for 100 milliseconds. The decision was made to keep the Unlatch and also install two additional push plates at 7-8” above the floor.
A Norton Touch Less Wall Switch was installed onto the interior side of the door, replacing the existing switch that was later installed at seven inches above the floor directly beneath the Touch Less Switch. No physical contact is required to operate this switch. Just a wave of the hand within range of the adjustable sensor can activate the power door operator.
IMPORTANT: Before the installation, the door and the entry were examined to be certain the door would properly close and latch. It was noted that the door dragged slightly along the floor closest to the opening edge. An adjustment was made to the top butt hinge, which slightly lifted the door, resolving the problem.
The Norton X-in is designed to operate on the “pull” or “push” side of the door. For “pull” side operation, a rigid arm and slide track assembly is installed. In the closed position, the rigid arm is fully extended into the track assembly. As the arm swings and moves down the track, the door is pulled open. The opening range is from 85 to 110 degrees, with adjustments in equal increments.
For “push” side operation, the installation is similar to a top jamb installation of a door closer. The main arm extends almost perpendicular from the door face. The shoe that mounts onto the arm slide is slightly offset and angled. Reversing the shoe can increase or decrease the closing force. To make the connection between the arm and the operator, the X-in uses a toothed gear to improve the mating connection.
The Norton X-in has six screw holes that run the length of the back plate at the top and the bottom. The lower six screws were installed the back plate onto the metal jamb header.
For this installation the metal jamb header extended proud from the wall by approximately one-half inch. To ensure a solid installation, a piece of ½” plywood was positioned above the jamb header. Then six screws were installed through the back plate, plywood, drywall and into the studs. This way the back plate is plumb. Note: The minimum ceiling clearance for installing the X-in is 5-5/8”.
Once the unit was installed, the next step was to run the wiring and make the connections. The back plate has three connections for the 120VAC - black “hot”, white “common” (neutral) and green ground. The X-in has a built-in Class 2 power supply provides a maximum of 400 mA @ 24VDC. The four connection are “+’, “-“ and “Activation Device” connections. In addition, there is 24VDC available on both the Main Control Unit and the Auxiliary Control Board.
The “Activation Device” connections are used to activate the opening of the door by an external and non-connected source including key switches, push plates and readers.
For this installation, the activation devices are the three push plates and the Touch Less Switch.
24VDC constant power is available on both the Main and Auxiliary Control Boards. The decision was made to wire the Touch Less Switch to the Auxiliary Control Board. The green and white wires from the switch will be connected to the Activation Device connectors on the back plate.
The three push plates are wired in parallel, so when any one these devices is activated, an electrical signal is sent to the Activation Device connection, notifying the X-in to open the door.
For this installation, the push plates are parallel wired from the “IMP” to the “GND” (Ground) on the Main Control Unit connector (IMP is position two) and GND is position number one on the connector. When any push plate is pressed, the circuit closes, sending the signal to release the cylindrical lock latch and to open the door.
To wire the Unlatch for this installation, a power supply and five Amp relay are required. The decision was made to use the Securitron BPS 24-2, a two Amp power supply, as the Unlatch requires 1-1/2 Amp in-rush for 100 milliseconds. The red wire is connected to both the power supply and the common input at the relay. The orange wire, the trigger wire from the Unlatch is also connected to the relay at the Normally Open Input. The black wire is the ground. Only these three wires were used for this installation.
The relay is required to activate the Unlatch. The X-in is not designed for this application. The relay wires are connected to the power wires from the Activation Device on the backplate. The relay is then mounted onto the back plate.
The Touch Less Switch is powered using the “+” and “-“ on the back plate 24VDC power supply. The green wire and the white wire from the switch are connected to the Activation Device connections on the back plate.
Once the wiring is complete, the next step is to program the operator in order to properly open and close the door. The Norton 5900 Series X-in has standard features including Power Assist, Obstruction Detection, Infinite Hold Open, and Power Latch. In addition, the Push and Go feature can be selected for installations when it is advantageous to have the door opened to the full open position when the X-in senses movement of the door.
The Power Assist allows the door to be opened manually with a force of less than five pounds. Obstruction Detection is designed to avoid accidents when someone tries to go through the door during either the opening or closing cycle. During the opening cycle, the door closes if it contacts an obstruction. If the door is closing and contacts an obstruction, it will stop moving until the obstruction is removed from the opening. Power Latch increases the closing force to give the little extra that is sometimes necessary to close and latch the door.
When the unit is first powered, the door will open to the maximum open position that can be determined by looking at the door stop arm. For this installation, the door stop arm is located on the bottom portion of the spindle. If necessary, the door stop arm should be adjusted to set the door opening to the maximum open position.
Once adjusted, the next step is to have the Norton 5900 Series X-in “learn.” With the door closed and latched, press the “LRN” (Learn) button on the Main Control Unit in order to calibrate the door mass and automatically set the backcheck and latch. Note: A two-second delay permits clearing the opening path before the door starts moving.
Adjustments can be made separate of the “learn” function. These include setting the hold open time by adjusting the potentiometer on the Main Control Unit.
The Norton 5900 Series X-in is available in two finishes, aluminum and statuary bronze. The finishes are sprayed with a combination of waterborne acrylic and polyester powder coat.
For a double-door installation, Norton offers a “Sync” cable in order to synchronizes the two operators when closing the two doors.
Norton 5900 X-in has a 2-year limited warranty.
A copy of the installation instructions is available online at the Norton Door Controls Web Site.
For more information, contact your local locksmith distributor or Norton Door Controls, 3000 Highway 74, East Monroe, NC 28112. Telephone: 877-974-2255. Web Site: www.nortondoorcontrols.com.