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New Power-Assisted Doors easily operable for all users
Power-assisted doors are often added in high traffic areas of
facilities to provide ease of access through entry doors that
often exceed the force requirements under the Americans with Disabilities
Act Accessibility Guidelines. One of the long standing criticisms
to the power-assisted door models has been that because of the
tension on the door opener, they are difficult to manually open.
New power-assisted door models by Stanley Doors, AmeriLite and
others address the issue.
In addition to the common door activating buttons, pressure pads
and sensors, the low-energy power-assist operating system offers
a low force requirement making the door much easier to operate
manually. The user activates the system with a slight push or
pull of the door handle, after which the operating system takes
over and opens the door to a full 90 degrees with no further exertion
from the user. The opening of the door can be extended past 90
degrees if desired, simply by changing settings on the operating
mechanism. The low-energy operating units open and close doors
slowly, stop when an obstruction is encountered and are-designed
with adjustable time delays. These units also work in conjunction
with other operating units such as activation buttons and push
Tim Ball, former Facilities Manager for the City of Bloomington,
states "I was really interested in the new doors because
they had wireless remotes, where you could open the door just
about wherever you wanted to. So it gave me a lot of flexibility
as far as to where to put the remote buttons to open the door;
I have one on the outside, one on the inside and I have one at
the greeter's stand inside the lobby of the city's municipal building.
It takes no wiring, they are operated by a 9-volt battery with
a little antenna on the door itself. They've actually worked quite
well." Jim Lang, the current Facilities Manager for the City
of Bloomington concurs, " They work quite well. People do
Bob Tegart, Department Head for Facilities Management at the
Von Maur Department Store in Indianapolis says the doors also
have a lower occurrence of replacement, having only replaced one
unit in the last three years. Tegart believes that most problems
occur when people to try to assist the door during its closing
cycle, however the operating units themselves are quite durable.
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