Powered Door Actuator

The San Francisco Building Department allows powered door actuators to be used in lieu of level landings at doors.  When power door actuators are provided, there must be 2 sets – inside and outside the door.  There must also be 2 buttons at each location.  The lower button to be centered 7″-8″ above the floor and the upper button centered between 30″-44″ above the floor.
SF Admin. Bulletin AB-012  CBC 1133B.2.5 Exception 2.c

About Dwight Ashdown

The website is authored by Ashdown Architecture, Inc., a California Architectural firm and Certified Access Specialist (CASp) #112 All content is copyrighted by Ashdown Architecture and may not be used without the written consent of Ashdown Architecture, Inc.
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6 Responses to Powered Door Actuator

  1. Moniqueka Rabara says:

    how about push to open doors and schools for students in wheelchairs?

    • Dwight Ashdown says:

      I’m not sure what the question is – but on a general level a push to open door should be limited to 5 lbs. pressure, assuming the required clearances are provided. If the required clearances are not available, then the door should have push button actuators.

  2. Emily says:

    Can you recommend a local SF bay area/norcal manufacturer? Thanks.

  3. Nelson Mejia says:

    What do I do with a school whose doors meet the minimum disability requirements but do not have powered actuated doors? My son is special needs and has to use a trike to get in and out and around school. My concern is that in situation where there is a fire or danger and his aid is incapacitated my son has no ability to get out on his own because the door is to heavy for him to push and anyone in a wheelchair, crutches or trike cannot get out safely because they cannot open the doors. In other words they are trapped unless someone is present and willing to lend a hand.

    For disabled children isn’t it the law to make it the least restrictive for them and the most independent possible.

    • Dwight Ashdown says:

      Power door operators are often used where the physical conditions of the building don’t meet the applicable accessibility codes. One of the codes that applies to doors requires that they can be opened with 5 lbs. max. force. The problem is that at 5 lbs., wind pressure will often pull open a door, so doors are set at a heavier pressure and provided with power door operators. I would suggest that you have a conversation with the school & see if they will install a powered door operator.

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