Barn doors may be better left on barns. I currently receive about a call a month to question if I can sort out a hotel sliding barn door injury. This is a trend that has continued since hotel designers decided that it would be a fantastic concept to set up sliding type barn doors to separate bathrooms and other areas from the hotel guest bedroom.
The 1st time I saw a door with this type installed in a newly renovated hotel room, I immediately thought that this is a car accident waiting to happen. It had been either going to make a pinch injury, a crush incident, or the door would likely fall from the hanging rail and smash into someone. I used to be more concerned that unattended children playing with these doors would get seriously injured.
Sure enough, inside a month of seeing this sort of door installation, the calls started getting into the office. These calls happen to be ongoing for the last four years.
The peculiar aspect of these installations is there are a lot of small hardware component pieces that can become loose and ultimately fall off causing detachment from the door. Various manufacturers use differing types and qualities of materials to create the doors slide, however, most door systems are subject to exactly the same problems. They loosen, break apart, fall away from their track or move from adjustment ultimately causing serious personal injuries of hotel guests as the sliding doors disconnect from their hanging hardware in one method or another.
What Fails? Defectively operating hotel barn doors have created injuries in various ways. Hanger bars have grown to be detached from the wall. Guide rollers and limiters have become disconnected. Screws go missing and were unchecked. Door hangers have lost their grip. Rollers have cracked and broken. Rubber stops have disappeared. The base plates and screws that keep your door from swinging away from the wall have broken or disconnected completely from your floor. Rust has affected the hardware as a result of moisture through the bathroom, and parts have seized. Glass doors have shattered as a result of stresses imparted since the door has been pushed into obstructions if they are from alignment.
When depositions of hotel staff are taken and they are asked regarding how the barn door systems are maintained, the typical fact is “we don’t do much”. Sometimes they promise they may have boxes of replacement parts left from the original installation, and “once we notice something wrong, we go get one of those spares”. Many hotels claim that they make routine inspections of the guest rooms, but I haven’t encountered one hotel that pays the needed attention to these doors, even though a physical injury incident occurs.
In most hotels the housekeepers are charged with cleaning and preparing the rooms for new guests. Those housekeepers are definitely the only check for room condition before a new occupancy. Housekeeping concerns are often limited to quickly checking to determine if the carpet is soiled, trash can liners will be in place, the bed sheets are clean, and toiletries are in spot in the toilet. Housekeepers do not possess the skill set, time in the room or training to judge loose hardware on sliding barn doors. Some managers have claimed which they inspect the rooms with some other hotel personnel over a routine scheduled cycle, however their inspections are often too far apart. Quarterly as well as monthly room checks are inadequate to counteract the daily changes that occur using the hardware on many barn style doors. We have never seen any info about specific barn door hardware inspections. Generally speaking, life safety and room security would be the extent for any door inspections, if those issues are even evaluated.
What Kind Of Parts Have A Sliding Barn Door? Installations and hardware of these barn door systems often include up to 30 separate components. You can find bracket hangers that are attached to the top of the some type of a slab door. Doors can weigh over 200 pounds depending upon the door width, thickness, and height. The doorway hangers are attached to a roller of some sort. These rollers can be produced from steel, rubber, plastic or aluminum. Glass doors are hung using slots or holes that have been precut in the glass prior to tempering. Glass doors have hardware that really must be gasketed with rubber or plastic to keep metal components from making exposure to the glass directly. All doors using rollers are held in place with an axel or screws. Next, the rod or bar stock that these particular rollers move ahead should be properly connected to the wall.
To ensure that the carrier rods or bars are safely mounted, there should be steel backing plates or wooden blocking within the appropriate location in the adjacent wall. Sometimes, a renovation in the room has not included these backing materials, and the hanging rods are founded into drywall alone. The brackets that mount these rods or brackets have to be positively located into some formidable blocking materials, and appropriately mounted using proper screws made to maintain the weight from the door and sliding systems. Deformation of the finished drywall surface, because of the weight of improperly designed systems, has established looseness from the hanging tracks, and ultimately led to barn door failures.
Many barn door carriers only have a top-notch roller and depend on a bar or part of metal to maintain the doorway from lifting off of the hanging track. More sophisticated systems might have both a high and bottom roller to limit the movement in the door once the door is inadvertently pushed up by usage. Most wooden or metal barn door hardware sets need a slot cut into the base of the door in order that a flat plate, screw or t shaped bit of metal will keep the doorway from swinging diagonally away from the opening when used. Glass barn doors frequently have L shaped floor guides to direct the travel in the sliding door. Not all the barn door system has this bottom bit of hardware and a few are incredibly weak.
As well as these basic components, additionally, there are additional stop pieces, limiters, snubbers and other regulating pieces that maintain the door on the hanging rod or bar stock, based upon the program, manufacturer, and form of the entrance hardware. Some barn doors are just glass sheets. These doors are often tempered or made from laminated safety glass. Moving doors made of glass can spontaneously shatter because of stresses imparted for the glass as early as when manufactured. Glass doors utilized for these otrwje door installations are like all other glass doors. They may be affected by previous use, impact from vacuums or any other normal operational conditions. Sometimes holes or slots prepared within the glass that are utilized to hang the doors become stressed and also the door shatters out of nowhere. Employing a sliding glass door comes along with increased probability of failure as it is a moving piece of glass. Glass is normally much less resilient to stresses as being a wood or a metal door and adds to the chance of injury.