Added Security through Delayed Egress

As security and door control grow in popularity, the variety of delayed egress products is also increasing, with many different models to suit a variety of installation environments.

Along with the increase in the use of Special Locking Arrangements, the number of building codes addressing these installations have also increased, with different code writers specifying different requirements. Therefore the first step the locksmith must take before repairing or installing a delayed egress system is to determine the requirements his LAHJ (local authority having jurisdiction). Life Safety issues must be taken seriously.

Recently we were called to perform a service call on a delayed egress system installed on the shipping and receiving door of a large supermarket. The system which required service was an Alarm Lock #715 delayed egress electronic exit door locking system which had been pretty much destroyed by forklifts smashing into it.

We knew from first-hand experiences that the local authority having jurisdiction (LAHJ) was tolerant of Delayed Egress installations which conformed to the 2003 International Fire Code (paragraph 1008.1.8.6).

The #715 is somewhat unique in that it is a mechanical locking device that incorporates a deadbolt and a unique rotating cam latch.

The #715 also utilizes control circuitry which is mounted off the door on the wall adjacent to the door.

The #715 may be handed in the field to suite the application.

The #715 is an evolved version of the legendary SIRENLOCKā„¢ MODELS 250/260 700/710 units that made Alarm Lock a legend.

The #715 adds the delayed egress feature, extends the paddle to a bar across the door, uses line voltage power supply as well as a battery backup, and provides the unique cam latch.

Arming the #715 is accomplished by actuating the deadbolt using a 1 1/8" rim cylinder. A cylinder may be installed on the exterior of the door so the unit may be armed/disarmed from either side.

Arming the unit extends the deadbolt into the rim strike and physically locks the door. The #715 also engages the door with a cam latch.

The #715 provides the ability to connect to the fire alarm and smoke detector. When the bar on the #715 is depressed, a loud alarm sounds (95dB@ 10 feet), and after 15 seconds the door may be opened for egress. In the event of a fire alarm, the door may be opened instantly.

The audible alarm may be configured to either sound continuously until the #715 is reset with a key, or automatically shut down after two minutes. The door must be manually relocked with a key regardless of the audible alarm setting.

A power interruption to the #715 will not cause the door to unlock or even affect the operation of the delayed egress feature. The standard and readily available 9-volt battery used for backup will operate the unit for 200 alarm sequences or seven hours of continuous alarm.

Alarm Lock emphasizes that NFPA 101 regulations be observed when the #715 is connected to an approved supervised automatic fire detection system or sprinkler system. Alarm Lock also recommends use of a door closer which is able to fully close the door.

The #715 is a rugged device suitable for harsh environments. It will withstand a lot of abuse and continue to function properly.

For facilities or enterprises which use a large number of delayed egress systems, the #715 offers some great features:

It is positive locking; a dead battery or loss of power will not result in a loss of security

Most failures can be resolved by the replacement of a small inexpensive component available from Alarm Lock, rather than replacing the entire assembly.

Installation is surface-mounted; no mortising to the door or frame is required.

More Features

  • Offers stylish, cost-effective control of unauthorized use of exit doors
  • 15 second delayed egress with instant 95 db dual piezo alarm (meets UL specifications)
  • Instant alarmed exit in case of actual emergency or fire (meets NFPA 101 Life Safety Code)
  • Easy-to-install, surface mount unit in a standard panic bar deadbolt/deadlatch design
  • Monitoring output for simultaneous use of CCTV camera, secondary siren, remote monitoring console, etc.
  • An input is provided that can be used to interface with an existing FACP. Additional terminals are provided for the connection of a stand-alone smoke detector(s). The parts kit Includes armored door loop and multiconductor cable for wiring
  • 9V battery back-up powers in event of power failure

Service Call

On our project, the AL#715 system was installed with no outside trim because there is no entry into the area from the outside. If the door was to be opened, the employees did it from within.

The system was keyed to arm/ disarm by the manager's key on an interchangeable core and a separate alarm keypad located next to the door. The manager guarded the key like his job depended on it, so we had to page him and get him to return to the door every time we wanted to perform an 'in-progress' system test.

Additionally the AL#715 was connected to the premises fire alarm. If the fire control panel went into alarm, the AL#715 was set up to cancel the exit delay and unlock immediately if the bar was pressed, for immediate egress. If the bar was not pressed, the door remained locked. This is a good idea, in case someone deliberately initiated an alarm at the FACP or at the door and then left the area to see if anyone responded. If the door were to unlock regardless, this person could then return to the outside of the premises and gain entry.

Normal operation was if someone attempted to egress without first disarming the AL#715, the built in sounder sounded and the alarm system would notify the front desk.

During the service call, we determined that the circuit from the FACP to the alarm lock was in constant alarm condition, and therefore the AL#715 therefore wasn't delaying egress as the system was designed to do. Additionally the required signage was missing from the door.

Before departing, we notified the facilities department of the FACP system trouble and installed the required signage.

We then made follow-up phone calls to the facilities department, and returned to the store when the FACP issue had been resolved to re-attach the FACP and perform a final operational test on the system.

New Installations

Installation of an AL #715 requires four important things:

A customer who will pay you

An AL#715

A system/installation plan

The LAHJ's approval.

Be sure you have the approval of the LAHJ before investing too much time or money in the project. Be certain your door is outswinging and in working condition. A door closer is recommended.

Locate the AC voltage source you will use to power the AL#715, and note what external connections you will need to make.

The control box must be mounted on the wall adjacent to the door, so determine where it is going to be placed. An Alarm Lock armored door loop is provided with the system. The door loop may be mounted at the same height as the AL#715, but it will then be rather vulnerable to damage. The door loop can also be mounted at the top of the door on the hinge side, but then you have to figure out how to get the cable from the AL#715 up to the top of the door. A surface mounted wire mold kit is available form Alarm Lock; you can obtain additional wiremold from your distributor or a home center.

The AL#715 transformer is a plug in type, but it is best to determine whether a duplex receptacle or a hard-wire quad box will be supplied by the client. Plug-in transformer are easy to deal with, but they also can be problematic if the receptacle is subject to tampering and transformer might fall out or be purposely removed. Hard-wired transformers are readily available. If you are not a licensed electrician, it is recommended to have the client arrange for a licensed and insured electrician to deal with this detail of the installation.

If a fire alarm connection is mandated by the LAHJ, make an agreement with the fire alarm contractor as to how this connection is to be performed, when he'll do it, and how you will test the system when you're complete.

Ask your client if outside key control will be required and have the required tools and accessories on hand for the day of the installation. The AL#715 is all surface mounted, but the locking mechanism is somewhat unique. You may wish to review the installation instructions and examine the #715 unit before throwing it on the truck and heading out to the installation site.

Alarm Lock offers the #715 in a 15-second delay only. This is the standard delay recognized throughout the country. The AL #715 is available in aluminum finish and with 33" and 48" bar lengths. Other options include a double door strike, rim cylinder, surface wiring kit, metal mounting plate (for use on glass doors) and a unique 277V transformer so that the AL#715 can be powered from an exit sign.

For more information, contact your locksmith distributor or Alarm Lock, telephone 800-ALA-LOCK, Web site www.alarmlock.com.

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