Overhead Door Closers

What is an Overhead Door Closer?

Door closers are fitted to a door to aid closure. Surface mounted closers are the most common type of closer.

The unit is surface mounted to the top of the frame, with an arm attached to the door.

These can be used on many lighter entrance doors, or where the installation of a floor spring unit is not possible.

  • Overhead door closers can be used to control the environment and temperature within the building i.e. to ensure the air conditioning is stable or to retain a fire.
  • Typically an overhead door closer can only be used as single action.
  • There are concealed overhead closers available which sit in the top of the door frame.

How do I know which type to buy?

Listed below are the main factors that have to be taken into consideration when purchasing overhead door closers. Please click on the links below for more information.

Door Weight and Width
There are various door closures available. All manufacturers will have a maximum door width and weight for each of their products. This is usually determined by the different strengths of the models. Depending on the manufacturer the door strength can also be determined by where the unit is fitted on the door and to how much tension it produces.
Traffic Flow
A door which gets a lot of use i.e. Main Entrance Door to a restaurant, may require a more heavy duty closer than an internal office door.
Door Location
There are 3 main locations which will have specific needs. Internal Doors - Need to be kept in a closed position i.e. toilet doors. External Doors - Need to close for security or to prevent weather damage i.e. wind. Fire Doors - These can be internal or external and require the door to be kept in a closed position in the event of a fire. These doors can be fitted with an electronic door closer which holds the door in an open position on a magnet and is linked to the fire alarm system. In the event of a fire the magnet releases and the door closes to.
The cost can vary enormously between strength of units and manufacturers. Adjustable closers are a good purchase, as they give you the ability to alter the door strength when required e.g. during wintry weather conditions. As a general rule, as long as all the other considerations are taken into account you should get a product suitable for your location. Different finishes can be more expensive than others.
Most door closers come in a standard silver finish, however various other colours or metal finishes are available at a supplement. This may involve purchasing the unit body only, with a separate coloured cover to fit over the body.
DDA Regulations
The Disability Discrimination Act regulations came into force in October 2004. You must ensure your doors cover the necessary requirements for your location when you fit any form of door closing equipment to your door.
Back Check
You may need to choose a closure with back check. This creates a buffer to stop the door being pushed back hard against the wall. This prevents damage to the door, closer, handles etc. this can be useful in an area where the wind can blow a door open hard.
Anti Corrosive
In an area of high moisture content an anti-corrosive product will be required, we suggest the Dorma TS 83 anti-corrosive unit for this location.
Delayed Closure
Some locations require a closer to keep the door open for a set period of time before it closes to slowly. This is called delayed closing. This is suitable for specific locations i.e. operating theatres, wheelchair users, tea trolleys etc.
Hold Open
In certain circumstances it will be necessary for a door to have a hold open facility, this will require a special hold open arm to be fitted (not suitable for fire doors). The door will remain open at a preset angle until it is closed manually or the hold open facility is switched off.
Depending on the door set up a mounting plate/ bracket may be required to ease fitment of the closer e.g. door frame above the door is too narrow, therefore a mlounting plate may be fitted to give extra fitting area. This can be especially necessary when fitting a unit to a UPVC door, as it is hard to get exact fittings without hitting on the glass, whereas a mounting plate will give you the option of many fixing positions. The most common brackets are: Mounting plate, Drop plate, Angle brackets, Parallel arm brackets and Glass door bracket.