Automatic Doors and Accessibility – 5 Things to Consider

When people consider accessibility, they probably think of wheelchair ramps and lifts. This is one important aspect when looking at accessibility in relation to automatic doors, but there is so much more to consider to ensure you benefit from your automatic door solution.


If you are considering automatic doors to meet your needs for access to your building, here are five things to consider before deciding on the best installation:

  1. Disability Requirements

Automatic doors allow access into and around buildings and help with compliance to Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) regulations which is very important. Benefits of automatic doors that assist disabled access include no physical effort to open a door and correct door dimensions for wheelchair access. You need to assess where your automatic door is going to be placed on the building and in some cases this may include providing a ramp and railings for wheelchair and disabled access.

  1. Door Entry Method

With lots of choice from sliding doors, swinging doors, revolving doors, telescopic doors and many more, it is important to assess how people will be using the door, how many people will be using the door and if they have any specific needs. For example, if your building has a high footfall, a revolving door would be an ideal option to ensure people are filtered in to prevent accidents. Automatic telescopic doors are great when there is limited space on a building but you still need to meet requirements and swinging doors can offer a low energy option. For further information on choosing the right type of automatic door, read our guide.

Considering the size of your automatic door may be restricted to the building and this may limit the type of door you can choose as above. Therefore, this is an important consideration to ensure you are allowing the correct type of access and also meeting all requirements.

  1. Door Openers

There are two types of door operators. Actuators are an electronically operated device that can be fitted to a door installation. This option offers a silent operation and can be fitted with back-up batteries in the event of power failure. This type of opener also ensures that doors are closed at all times for fire-safety and draft prevention. Pneumatic operators utilise an air compressor, using air pressure to open a door, which is efficient and offers a cost saving. They can also be used in hazardous situations as there is no need for electricity to be applied to the door itself.

  1. Activators

Both types of door openers explained above can be ‘activated’ using different methods. Approach sensor which will open a door when a user approaches offering a very accessible option. There are also activators that will open the door when the user stands on a pressure mat, which can assist with draft exclusion. Or you could opt for access control, which requires a fob or remote control button for access, which is suitable when a level of security is required.

  1. Maintenance and Repairs

Accessibility is very important and so is choosing a maintenance package for your automatic door solutions. In order to increase the lifetime of your chosen automatic door, regular maintenance and safety checks should take place. Equally, it is important to have emergency assistance on hand in cases of emergency.

For more information and advice choosing an automatic door solution, call us on 0116 269 5050 or use our online contact form.