- SFS Intec -

Accessing all areas

Designed with Part M of the Building Regulations in mind, SFS intec’s new Just 3D hinge enables wider door openings and simple adjustments on installation, helping to set the door to its optimum position for regulation compliancy.

Applicable for non-domestic buildings and dwellings too, Part M of the Building Regulations requires the complete provision for ease of access to, and circulation within all buildings, together with facility requirements for disabled people. Covering elements from the periphery of the property right to the core, such as access via car parks, exterior ramps, interior steps and lifts, Part M also covers all doors specifically in relation to opening width and thresholds.

Nigel Wood, Business Development Manager at SFS intec, comments: “A regulation that was brought to the fore during the London 2012 Paralympics, Part M features many elements that must be considered in the design and build of structures to ensure ease of access and use of the building for all occupants, especially the disabled.

“For example, once open, all doors must be wide enough to allow unrestricted passage for all users and in particular those using wheelchairs. By using a slim, flexible hinge such as the Just 3D - which can also be applied to a number of outer frame materials, including steel - specifiers can create a wider door opening, particularly key in refurbishment projects where existing apertures may not be altered. The hinge design allows for extra movement compared to a standard flag hinge, which is bulky and obtrusive.”

A door’s threshold must be level in order to comply with Part M of the Building Regulations. If this is unavoidable then it must be no more than a total of 15mm in height. With this in mind, it is important that there is adjustability within the hinge when the door is installed to allow movement across the height, length and gasket pressure. Ideally, it should allow for +2.5mm adjustability to be able to set the door at the optimum position and create a sufficient weather seal. If it is too low, it will wear and if it is set too high, it could suffer water ingress.

Written to ensure that the design of a building does not create physical barriers to a building's inclusive use over its lifetime, Part M highlights that the requirements placed on even the smallest components such as a hinge, are just as key. And by taking the little things into account, installers and suppliers can ensure compliancy time and time again.

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SFS Intec

SFS intec has been manufacturing high performance door hinges in Europe since 1980 and offers one of the industry’s most advanced ranges to suit PVC-U, composite, timber and aluminium entrance doors, plus internal doors.

SFS intec’s hinge division has been accredited by the UK Police flagship initiative - Secure by Design – a scheme which focuses on crime prevention at the design, layout and construction stages of homes and commercial premises and promotes the use of security standards for a wide range of applications and products.

With its headquarters in Heerbrugg, Switzerland, SFS intec also has manufacturing operations in, France, Italy, America and the UK.

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