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9 min read

Selecting windows and doors for secure and modern office buildings

Written by

Kacper Szczypek

Reading Time: 9 minutes

Choosing the right office doors is more than just an aesthetic decision. It’s a commitment to security, energy efficiency, and creating a conducive environment for productivity. From the strength of tempered glass to the accessibility of low thresholds, every detail counts. But how do you navigate the plethora of options, materials, and styles available? Don’t worry, this guide made with Fenbro experts has got you covered. Let’s embark on this journey to find the perfect door for your modern office building.

Choosing the right office doors for your business

The process of selecting appropriate office doors is a crucial factor influencing both the security and functionality of your commercial property, including commercial buildings. The choice of doors can drastically affect the overall energy conservation within an office setting. This is where the durability of the doors comes into play. Appropriate commercial doors offer substantial security benefits owing to their sturdy build. Furthermore, the use of tempered glass, a type of commercial glass, can significantly boost the safety and strength of office doors. Being four to six times stronger than standard residential glass, it reduces the risk of injury in the event of breakage, making it a popular choice for office environments.

Yet, the selection of office doors goes beyond just security and durability; it encapsulates the need to harmonise aesthetics as well. For instance, the incorporation of commercial windows along with internal steel doors can enhance the visual appeal of the office while also letting in more natural light. So, how does one make the right choice? Let’s delve into the factors to consider and the material options available.

Aluminium windows, known for their sleek, modern design and slim frames, offer the perfect blend of aesthetics and functionality for both commercial and residential buildings. These windows stand out for their ability to accommodate large glazing areas, providing expansive views and enhancing the natural light in any space, all while maintaining a high level of safety and security. Offering excellent value for money, aluminium windows from suppliers like Fenbro are an affordable choice without sacrificing quality, making them a top pick for projects where cost-effectiveness is as important as style and durability.

Factors to consider

The task of selecting office doors warrants careful consideration. Not only does it involve a significant investment, but it also impacts the functionality and aesthetics of the office. The budget plays a crucial role in this decision, determining the materials, design, and quality of doors that can be afforded. However, it’s important to note that low-cost options might not always be the best eventually.

Beyond the budget, the design of the office also influences the selection of doors. Various factors such as productivity, brand representation, spatial perception, communication, and work-life balance must be considered. Furthermore, businesses may have specific requirements such as compliance with fire door regulations, security features, and accessibility. For instance, aluminium entrance doors can meet various company-specific needs.

Finally, the necessity for privacy plays a pivotal role in determining the selection of internal doors. Incorporation of doors with the following features can help in ensuring privacy:

  • Soundproofing capabilities
  • Privacy glass options such as frosted or tinted treatments
  • Access control systems to ensure that only authorised individuals have access to specific areas.

Material options

After identification of the pertinent factors, the subsequent step involves picking the most suitable material for the office doors. The material of the door can significantly influence its durability, functionality, aesthetics, and cost. Some materials available for office doors are:

  • Steel
  • Aluminium

For instance, fully glazed double doors can add an elegant touch to the office while also letting in more natural light.

The choice of material also impacts the guarantee period of the doors. For instance, the minimum guarantee period for steel entrance doors is typically 1 year. However, while the cost and guarantee period are important considerations, they should not be the sole determining factors. The choice of material should also consider the specific needs of the office, such as the requirement for high security or soundproofing.

Types of office doors — a comprehensive guide

Appreciating the diversity of office doors is instrumental in facilitating a well-informed decision. Each type of door, whether hinged, sliding, or  glass partition door, offers unique advantages and could be suited to different office settings. For instance, hinged office doors offer stability and security, along with good insulation. However, they may limit light and visibility, which can be countered by incorporating aluminium windows for improved visibility.

On the other hand, when considering hinged versus sliding doors, factors such as available space, aesthetic preferences, and security needs come into play. Sliding doors, for instance, are ideal for offices with limited space.

Meanwhile, glass partition doors are available in various styles and cater to a range of design preferences and functional needs. They can be used to maximise natural light and create a sense of openness. Let’s delve deeper into these types of doors.

Hinged doors

Hinged doors, owing to their traditional and adaptable nature, are an excellent choice for office spaces. Their stability and security make them a popular choice for many businesses. They’re easy to operate and can be wedged open in high-traffic areas for convenience, making them particularly suitable for social housing projects. Besides, hinged doors offer a range of design options to cater to various office spaces. Furthermore, hinged doors can accommodate various types of locking mechanisms, such as traditional key locks, deadbolt locks, mortise locks, and even magnetic locks. These locking systems can be either surface mounted or morticed, offering a diverse range of security options.

Sliding doors

Offering a contemporary and practical solution, internal sliding doors are a viable option for office spaces. They’re perfect for offices with limited space as they move along a track, removing the requirement for swing clearance. This makes them a practical and adaptable choice, offering a comfortable setting for employees. Sliding office doors are typically made from steel.

Crafted from high-quality steel, like the ‘Norm Slide’ from Fenbro, these sliding doors provide robust durability and add a sleek, modern aesthetic to any office space. Their steel construction ensures longevity and ease of maintenance, while their sleek design complements various office styles, from minimalist to industrial. The ‘Norm Slide’ model exemplifies this blend of practicality and style, making it an excellent choice for businesses looking to optimize their workspace with a blend of functionality and modern design.

Aluminium pivot doors — the modern and versatile choice for offices

In the realm of modern office design, aluminium pivot doors are increasingly becoming a popular choice for their sleek aesthetics and functional versatility. These doors meet the latest design and technical requirements, making them suitable for various commercial applications. Whether used in single or multiple door configurations, aluminium pivot doors add a contemporary flair to any commercial space, including restaurants, schools, banks, and modern office buildings. Their popularity stems from the ability to incorporate advanced features like automatic opening and closing systems, which can be operated via codes or finger scans. This makes them not only a stylish but also a practical and secure option for office environments.

Glass partition doors

For modern offices, glass partition doors stand out as an outstanding choice. They offer a sense of transparency and facilitate the flow of natural light, enhancing the overall work environment. When privacy is needed, these doors can be constructed with specific finishes or opaque glass to establish clear boundaries between areas. They can also be equipped with blinds or curtains for additional privacy control.

Various glass types are suitable for partition doors, including:

  • Insulated glass
  • Textured glass
  • Clear glass
  • Tinted glass
  • Toughened glass
  • Stained glass
  • Acoustic glass
  • Laminated glass
  • Fire-rated glass
  • Specialist glass
  • Decorative glass

The type of glass chosen can significantly affect the door’s aesthetics and functionality.

The installation of glass partition doors involves several steps:

  1. Fixing a floor plate
  2. Installing top and bottom tracks
  3. Inserting the glass into these tracks
  4. Using a copolymer strip for proper holding

It’s important to ensure that the installation area is clean and that any adjacent works are completed beforehand.

The cost of installing glass partition doors can vary significantly, depending on the type of glass chosen, office size, and specific door features.

Enhancing security with high-quality office doors

When it comes to selecting office doors, security is a matter of paramount concern. High-quality doors equipped with advanced security features can significantly enhance safety and security in an office environment. Some key security features to consider include:

  • Mortise locks
  • Steel frames
  • Internet connectivity for remote management
  • Touchless entry systems
  • Reinforced locking systems

Moreover, fire-rated doors can offer protection against fire and smoke, making them a critical part of any office’s security plan.

Fire-rated doors are specifically engineered and evaluated to endure fire exposure for a specific duration, usually up to 3 hours. They are constructed with fire-resistant materials and are equipped with specialised seals to hinder the propagation of flames and smoke, thereby aiding in the confinement of the fire and affording occupants additional time for evacuation. Fire-rated doors intended for office use are commonly manufactured using materials like steel, which is recognized for its exceptional strength and fire resistance.

Fire-rated doors

Fire-rated doors must adhere to safety standards such as The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022, which mandate regular checks and maintenance, and BS 9999:2008, offering guidelines for building safety. They are generally rated as FD30 or FD60 for fire resistance, signifying 30 or 60 minutes of containment capability. These standards guarantee the efficacy of fire-rated doors in an emergency, making them a crucial part of office security.

Customising office doors for style and functionality

Personalising office doors can greatly elevate their aesthetic appeal and practicality. From vision panels and low thresholds to various colours and finishes, there are numerous ways to customise office doors.

Vision panels

Vision panels, as transparent or translucent panels in office doors, address lighting and visibility concerns, improve safety, and uphold the doors’ functionality and aesthetics. They enhance visibility for employees, promoting a sense of openness, and in emergency scenarios, vision panels with fire-rated glass can aid in assessing situations while maintaining closed doors, thereby mitigating the spread of fire and smoke.

Various materials, such as glass and other resilient substances capable of enduring wear, corrosion, and severe weather conditions, are used for vision panels. These materials enhance the contemporary look of office doors, providing both modern aesthetics and practical functionality. It’s important to note that doors wider than 450 mm must include a suitable vision panel to ensure compliance with safety standards.

Low thresholds

Low thresholds in office doors serve an important function in ensuring smooth transition between the interior and exterior of the office. They are usually around 25-50 mm in height and lack an upstand or lip to shield against wind and rain. Besides facilitating access for individuals with mobility impairments, including those using wheelchairs or with limited mobility, low thresholds allow for smooth movement and remove obstacles that could impede accessibility.

Compliance with disability regulations is another critical aspect of office doors. Regulations mandate that the door opening should be a minimum of 900 mm wide to facilitate wheelchair users, and there should be no obstructions in the vicinity of the door. Thus, incorporating low thresholds in office doors can significantly enhance their accessibility.

Colour and finish options

Choosing the right colour and finish can significantly enhance the aesthetic appeal of office doors. While white, black, grey, and classic wood tones are commonly preferred, vibrant options such as red, purple, teal, and yellow are also available to complement specific office aesthetics.

The finish of the door can also significantly impact its durability and maintenance. For instance, finishes such as semi-gloss or satin can withstand wear and tear, making doors easier to clean, and specific oils and paints can enhance the natural durability of wood.

It’s also worth noting that industry standards such as the RAL colour chart offer a standardised selection of colours and finishes, aiding decision-makers in choosing suitable options for office doors that comply with aesthetic and regulatory criteria.

Energy efficiency and insulation in office doors

When selecting office doors, energy efficiency and insulation should be considered as crucial factors. Doors with low U-values and effective weatherstripping and seals can significantly improve energy efficiency and insulation. The U-value of a door signifies the measure of the heat transfer resistance of the door material. It indicates the door’s insulation capability against heat loss, with a lower U-value signifying better insulation.

Moreover, certain characteristics of office doors can contribute to reducing the U-value, such as:

  • The use of double or triple glazing with low-emissivity (Low-E) glass coatings
  • The installation of warm-edge (non-metal) spacer bars
  • Filling the space between glass panes with insulating gases like Argon or Krypton
  • The utilisation of composite doors made from combinations of insulating materials.

Alongside, weatherstripping plays a crucial role in enhancing the insulation of office doors by:

  • Effectively sealing gaps and preventing drafts
  • Reducing energy loss
  • Improving overall energy efficiency
  • Enhancing the comfort of the office space.

Professional installation and maintenance of office doors

The longevity and optimal performance of office doors are ensured through professional installation and consistent maintenance. Choosing a reputable supplier who offers exceptional quality, service, and compliance with safety regulations is essential. Inadequate installation can lead to:

  • Misalignment
  • Gaps
  • Operational difficulties
  • Damage to the door surface
  • Potential legal implications for building owners.

Moreover, regular maintenance of office doors is crucial. Office doors should be maintained at least once annually. The maintenance regimen should encompass routine inspections for damage or issues and the servicing of electrically operated doors. Timely attention to minor issues during regular maintenance can help prevent larger problems. Thankfully, our experts at Fenbro know the tools of the trade when it comes to installing and maintaining doors.

Summary

In conclusion, choosing the right office doors is a multifaceted decision involving many factors. From materials and types to security features and fire ratings, every detail matters. Customization options like vision panels, low thresholds, and a range of colours and finishes can help you create doors that are not only functional but also aesthetically pleasing. Energy efficiency, insulation, professional installation, and regular maintenance further contribute to the longevity and optimal performance of office doors. By making informed choices, you can ensure that your office doors serve their primary function and contribute to a secure, energy-efficient, and conducive work environment.

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