Most fire rated jambs and hollow metal doors have a pre-drilled center hole to accommodate an electric hinge. If there is no predrilled hole, one must be drilled so the wires will not be crimped when installed.
The approximate 2mm diameter hole drilled through the edge of the standard butt hinge can accommodate one 18 or 20 AWG wire or up to four 28 AWG wires. Electric latch retraction applications can require two 18 or 20 AWG wires that can provide up to 3.5 or 5 Amps @ 24VDC (16 amp in-rush). Most low power operations including controls, REX and latch bolt monitoring can be powered using two or more 26 or 28 AWG wires. Standard wire configurations for electric hinges are two to 12 wires. Note: Electrified butt hinge leaves must not be separated as separation can result in breaking the wires.
Electric hinges can be ordered with two to 12 wires to accommodate the application. There are no set standards for the wire gauge or quantity in electric hinges.
Some wire configurations for electric hinges are:
Electric Latch Retraction:
2 Wire (18 or 20 AWG)
Low power applications:
4/6 Wire (26 AWG)
8/10/12 Wire (28 AWG)
Electric Latch Retraction and controls/switches:
4 - 12 Wire (2 wires @ 18 AWG + 2-10 wires 28 AWG)
If fewer wires are needed than the amount provided, splicing two or more similar gauge wires together can provide additional amperage. However, never overload the wires. Do not connect a 28 AWG wire to a 20AWG wire or a 24 AWG wire to an 18 AWG wire. The current that would try to go through the smaller gauge wire could cause the insulation to melt, resulting in a short or possible fire.
Hinges can be ordered with different wire lengths. For example, an electric hinge to be used with a latch pullback device requires a shorter wire run than an electric hinge used with an electrified mortise or cylindrical lock.
Important: When installing an electric hinge into a wood door when there is going to be a splice at the edge of the door, make sure there is an opening about 1-1/2” deep and ¾” diameter to accommodate the excess wire and any connectors.
Electric hinges should be ordered to match the other hinges on the door. An electric hinge can be ordered with door position monitoring, custom connectors or varying length wire runs.
Electric Continuous Hinges
Continuous hinges provide a more stable mechanism for high traffic openings or those that have larger and heavier or specific application swinging doors. Continuous hinges are available in aluminum, steel and stainless steel, in geared or pin and barrel configurations. They can be ordered as concealed, half surface, full surface, swing clear, wide throw and safety hinge.
Electrified continuous hinges come in one-piece or multiple section styles. For example, the Select Hinges Removable Electrical Aluminum Gear Hinge has three sections. The electrified hinge section can be removed from the door and jamb without having to remove the entire continuous hinge. The Select Hinge Accessible Electrical Aluminum Gear Hinge is a one-piece hinge that allows the electrified hinge portion to be accessed without having to remove the entire continuous hinge.
Depending upon the application and/or the manufacturer, the electrified continuous hinge may be handed.
Just like butt and continuous hinges, intermediate offset pivots, center hung top pivots and the pocket pivots are available electrified. Intermediate ¾” and 1-1/2” offset pivots and center hung top pivots are not load bearing; they keep the door in position.
Electrified pivots are available with up to 12 wires. Electrified door and jamb pivot leaves must not be separated as separation can result in breaking the wires.
The ¾” intermediate offset pivots have a brass, bronze or metal base. These handed intermediate pivots are available with different gauge and numbers of wires. For example, the Marray TEF10C Electric ¾ Offset Stainless Steel Pivot with 10 wires is listed for three-hour fire rated openings. Brass or bronze base materials are not suited for fire doors with ratings in excess of 20 minutes.
Electric pocket pivots are non-handed full mortise that are UL listed for fire doors on 3 hour “A” label, and 20 minute wood doors. Eight 28 AWG wires are normally supplied as standard.
Deliver total door service by fixing the real problem — worn hinges — and you’ll make more money and also satisfy a customer by fixing their problem for good.
We install a McKinney Continuous Geared Door Hinge onto a narrow stile aluminum glass door and aluminum frame.