Norton Door Controls, a division of ASSA ABLOY, has been manufacturing door checks, the precursor of the door closer, since Lewis C. Norton founded the Norton Door Check Company in 1880. A Door Check originated as a device that prevents a door equipped with a spring closing mechanism from slamming. These two components evolved into the door closer. Today’s standard hydraulic door closer uses a combination of managed fluid movement and spring pressure to control a door’s opening and closing cycles.
Over the years, improvements in door closer technology have produced more efficient closer models with capabilities including adjustable spring power, cam action, backcheck, delayed closing action, and improvement in control over the closing cycle. This is necessary to accommodate modern buildings and today’s rules and regulations.
One of the new challenges for door closers is to accommodate our aging population and persons with disabilities while providing an alternative to power door operators. Many door closers have the ability to delay their closing cycles. However, they are not designed to evaluate the speed at which a person moves through the doorway and to hold the door open until the person has passed completely through the doorway once they have opened the door.
To accommodate this, the Norton SafeZone electromechanical door closer/holder is designed for interior installation that incorporates a motion sensor and a solenoid with shut-off circuitry built into the closer assembly. The SafeZone is certified and tested for ANSI/BHMA A156.15 and UL-10C Positive Pressure. The SafeZone is Fail Safe. The solenoid will de-energize, allowing the door to close in the event of power failure.
When the motion sensor picks up movement during the opening, the solenoid stops the flow of fluid moving through the closer body. The unit can also be set to delay closing once no motion is detected (adjustable from 0.5 to 20 seconds).
The SafeZone creates a “safe zone” for any person needing more time to move through the opening. With a SafeZone installed, as the door is being opened, if movement is detected, the door can continue to be opened or stay in that position, giving the person or group of people additional time to move through the doorway. As long as motion is detected, the solenoid will not release. When no motion is detected for a period of time, the solenoid will release, permitting the door to close.
When a person is opening the door and enters the “safe zone,” the motion sensor detects the movement and the solenoid is powered, restricting the flow of fluid, resisting the door from closing. The door is still within the opening cycle and comes to a stop when pressure is no longer exerted.
At this point in time, the SafeZone becomes a holder. A physically disabled person in a wheelchair, an elderly person moving slowly, a group of children exiting an assembly hall are all protected while the door is not moving. As long as movement is detected in the “safe zone”, the door will remain still. When movement is no longer detected in the “safe zone”, the hold open times out and then permits the door to close.
A properly adjusted SafeZone will not permit a door to close during the opening portion of the cycle. Once SafeZone times out and the door begins to close, if movement is detected in the “safe zone,” the door will continue to close until the door is stopped or held open from closing. The solenoid will not stop a door during the closing cycle.
Door closers are manufactured according to the ANSI/BHMA A156.15 Closer Holders, Electromagnetic and Electromechanical Standard. The Standard reads: 5.1.6 Test: The force required to release the door manually shall not exceed 40 lbs (178 N) when measured 30 in (762mm) from the hinge centerline.
Specific security concerns are controlled access to specialized areas, supply rooms and medical carts, especially to control the access to medications, drugs, syringes, and needles.
A Norton 5900 Series X-in is installed onto the corridor doorway of a handicap-designated hospital room.