Surface Mounted Door Closer Accessories and Options

Determining exactly what the end-user needs and installing the best door closer with the appropriate arm and options will give your customer many years of trouble free operation.


A spring, cushioning equipped or positive stop arms are designed to help prevent the closer opening beyond its pre-adjusted limits and possible causing damage to the closer, the arm or door by over opening the door.

An extended arm rod has a longer than normal rod that permits the door closer to installed in a different location, such as on the wall adjacent to the door closer (pocket doors), a deep reveal or to provide greater opening capability. An extended arm rod probably should be used if the reveal is about four inches or more, a door that is equipped with swing clear hinges or butt hinges in excess of six inches.

A fusible link arm is a specialized hold-open arm designed to release the hold-open function when exposed to high temperatures. For example, the LCN fusible link arm is available with release temperatures of 135 or 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Note: A fusible link hold-open arm is not a life safety product. Always check codes before installing a door closer with a fusible link hold-open arm.

Fire Rated Openings

Fire rated openings require the door to close and latch automatically when released. If the door needs to be held open, there are several methods to achieve fire and building code compliance without interfering with normal building operation. Electromagnetic holders are hardwired for power and into the fire alarm relay that will interrupt power if the fire alarm sounds.

The self-contained choice is an electromechanical closer-holder release device. These battery powered devices are designed to hold open a fire and smoke rated door for use in existing facilities lacking a fire/smoke detection system. The electromechanical closer-holder release devices are equipped with an integrated fire/smoke detector. When smoke or fire is detected, the closer-holder releases the door closer arm, permitting the door to close. Before installing any products onto a fire rated opening, contact your local authority having jurisdiction.

Double lever arms are available with an offset bracket in order to lower the door closer for installations when there is a surface-mounted overhead stop, holder or in installations where the ceiling interferes with the movement of the arm.

Depending upon the installation, a specialized arm, shoe or soffit can be required to properly close the door. For example, there are Sargent flush frame arms designed to be used on openings when the door and frame are flush.

The door closer arm determines the degree of opening. Most door closer arms are not designed to provide a stop mechanism. Most openings should have a positive stop, which is a physical limit to opening of a door. Depending upon the application, a floor or wall mounted stop is optimal. The stop itself can be equipped with a resilient bumper. This positive stop stops the door swing before the swing limit imposed by the arm of the door closer.

Pairs of Doors

There are different considerations when installing door closers onto a pair of doors. Depending upon the application, if both doors require opening and there is no mullion, a door coordinator is required to make sure the inactive door closes first in order that the active door aligns and the lock mechanism secures the opening.

There are several types of door coordinators, including the gravity type and the soffit applied door coordinator. The gravity type door coordinator has two arms, one for the active door and one for the inactive door. If both doors are open, the gravity coordinator keeps the active door open. When the inactive door closes, the arms are raised allowing the active door to swing closed beneath the arm that had kept it partially open to a point that would allow the inactive door to swing shut. DORMA Architectural Hardware and Door Controls International (DCI) offer door coordinators.

Drop Plates & Corner Brackets

Installing the closer body onto the door can sometimes require a mounting (Drop) plate because the surface area for mounting the closer may not be tall enough. A good example is using a mounting plate to install a surface mounted door closer onto a narrow stile aluminum glass door. The International Door Closer Drop Plates allows for mounting their door closer onto a door having a minimum top rail. The Drop Plates are available in different sizes and different finishes.

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