Free-swing door closers overcome the two main issues faced by people with mobility issues or disabilities.
1. Firstly, there is the issue of opening a door fitted with a conventional automatic door closer. Due to frailty or dependence on a mobility device, this in itself can be difficult if not impossible for some.
2. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, there is the issue of the door closing on the individual before they have time to enter or exit. This can lead to injuries such as bruising from door handles and in some cases can cause falls.
A free-swing door closer allows a door to be opened and closed without any resistance or closing force, just like any door within your own home. And unlike ‘fixed hold-open’ devices that typically hold a door open at 90 degrees, a free-swing closer also allows you to leave the door in the open position at any angle.
Free-swing functionality is typically achieved using a 24v electro-magnetic door closer that is hard-wired into the fire alarm system. There is also a variety of battery-operated wire-free options available when wiring is not an option.
The low-voltage power supply effectively disengages the closing mechanism until the fire alarm is activated. At this point, the power is cut and the door will close from whatever position it is in, therefore complying with fire safety regulations.
Specifically in the care sector, use of this technology is in fact advised within the following Building Regulations. Approved Document B, Volume 2, Section 3.52 (pg. 42). Guidance Document 4 (Fire Safety Risk Assessment: Residential Care Premises) pages 15 and 18. Both of these recommend the use of free-swing door closers on resident’s bedroom doors.
Certain specialist free-swing products have been designed specifically for the Care Homes, Retirement Living and Social Housing sectors. Supplied and installed exclusively by Fire Door Controls, the Freeway Anti-Slam in particular boasts a number of safety features that are unavailable in other products. These include anti-slam, anti-drift, fixed closing speed and the unique ‘Assisted Reset’. Click here to read more.