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How do I Choose the Right Industrial Door?

Today, selecting the right industrial door for your facility is more complicated than ever. There are a variety of door styles, types and configurations on the market, so it’s easy to understand why choosing the best industrial door is a difficult decision.

It's also a critical decision to make, as a misapplied door can cause serious problems with environmental control, efficiency, durability and safety, while a properly applied door can: improve safety, increase productivity, save energy, minimise maintenance and repair costs, enhance plant productivity, and provide the best overall return on investment.


There are generally six factors to consider, which will help you determine the best total door solution for your facility:

  1. Environmental Control
  2. Efficiency
  3. Durability
  4. Safety
  5. Activation

1. Determine Importance of Environmental Control.
The most common reason for purchasing an industrial door is to separate different environments. There are several factors which can affect environmental control. These include: environmental separation, sealing, speed of operation, security and quality control. Do you need to prevent air transfer between different environments? Do you need to keep pests out? By examining these factors and their importance to you, you will be one step closer to choosing the door that will provide the best environmental control for your application.


2. Examine how Efficiency can be Improved.
Proper door selection can improve the efficiency of a facility. For example, a fast passage time allows equipment to move quickly through the opening, increasing productivity. Also, optimizing the traffic flow through a facility will improve efficiency, and will increase the productivity of your employees and machinery. A closer look at the issues affecting efficiency will further help you make the right door decision.


3. Choose a Door Designed for Durability.
The durability of a door can be determined by the following criteria: performance, impactability, maintenance needs and service support. Consider how much of a beating your doors will likely take on a regular basis and then choose a door which is designed to meet your durability requirements whether that be impact-resistant, heavy-duty, capable of high cycle or something else.


4. Make the Safest Choice Possible.
Because safety is important at every facility, factors must be considered which can affect safety. For example, the type and flow of traffic at the opening can contribute to safety concerns. Also, consider visibility needs at the opening. A high traffic opening will require more visibility than an opening with minimal traffic and this can be catered for by choosing a door that allows vision panels. Finally, look for the potential for accidents to occur and choose a door which will help prevent those accidents or minimise the damage/harm from one.


5. Activation of Power Doors is as Important as the Door Itself.
Activation is often taken for granted in door selection, however properly activated doors can provide many benefits. Use activation to your advantage to improve safety, increase environmental separation, customize door operation, improve productivity, eliminate false cycles, minimize door impacts, and lower maintenance and downtime. To determine the best activation for your application, look at the traffic, equipment going through and around the opening, and the physical characteristics of the opening.

 

 Other factors to consider when choosing the right industrial door:

Traffic

  • Type of traffic
  • Width and height of the loads
  • Number of cycles
  • Traffic patterns

Jamb Conditions

  • Width of jamb
  • Construction of jamb, steel or wood
  • Can a correct jamb be installed
  • Should mounting brackets be used

Purpose of Door

  • Temperature
  • Sound attenuation
  • Humidity control
  • Contamination control
  • Reduce traffic speed

Specific Conditions

  • Wash Down
  • Pressure
  • Floor incline or decline
  • Interior or exterior location
  • Existing transom
  • Existing overhead door or fire door
  • Oversized opening for transom or dutch door design

Ultimately, it's the combination of all of these factors that will determine the best door for your individual applications. 

The door manufacturer you choose should provide a total solution, not just hardware. You should expect innovative products with state-of-the-art features. But, you’re not only choosing an industrial door, you’re also choosing a company. Make sure you select a manufacturer and local dealer who stand behind the equipment and provide complete service and support. Ask about a company’s track record with existing customers. Ask for a product demonstration, and visit a field site where the equipment has been installed for some time. Check out the availability of service specialists. Ask about guaranteed life expectancy of the door and make sure you get written warranties.

Having been in the business now for over 25 years, we have watched the industry needs change and have the expertise to recommend the best solution to your unique needs. Plus we're always willing to help so feel free to reach out!

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