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Automatic doors have been around for a while now, and your regular old fashioned push/pull doors have been around as long as people have lived between four walls, so it shouldn’t make much of a difference which one you use for your storefront right? Actually, different types of doors and entryways can have different advantages over the other, and it may be worthwhile to invest in a higher tech doorway. 

So which one is right for you? Keep reading for the ultimate showdown of the century:

Traditional Hinged and Sliding Doors

A hinged door typically consists of either a solid wooden panel or a hollow-cored door affixed to a door jamb with two or more hinges. Quite usually, additional hinges are generally required to support taller doors that are beyond average height. For these exceptions, stronger and sturdier hinges are needed for heavier and bigger doors. Of course, the door size will depend on the size of your business’ storefront or other space and the relative size of the room it is installed in.

Alternatively, sliding doors are designed to glide horizontally with one operating panel and one stationary panel. They fit into tighter spaces in comparison to hinged doors since their panels don’t interfere with your room or patio. These doors slide from side to side and are generally more aesthetic in any room due to the fact that they are great for large patios/rooms and don’t take up much space.

Advantages of using a traditional door for your business:

Disadvantages of using a traditional door for your business:

 Considered to be a more traditional option, therefore, you are more likely to find a better range of doors in different sizes and finishes to fit your space and cater to your business’ unique structure. The manual usage of these doors also means the cost is significantly more affordable and they can be installed more easily by a wider range of professionals.

Hinged doors will usually take up more room as they have to swing outwards when open. As a result, if you don’t have a great deal of space on your patio, then you might want to consider the advantages of sliding doors. 

On top of that, one thing that has been on many people’s minds with the COVID-19 pandemic has been how often people come in contact with regular touch points. Personal health and safety have been on the forefront of people’s minds since the pandemic began and it’s likely a behavior that will continue post-COVID. Considering that manual doors need to be opened by hand may dissuade potential customers from shopping with you.


Pedestrian Sensing Automatic Doors

pedestrian automatic sliding doors

Sliding Doors are commonly found in grocery stores, airports and retail shops. The primary uses of sensors on sliding doors are to ensure safety, provide activation and enhance overall accessibility. Sliding Door sensors also help meet the ANSI 156.10 standards created to protect the people and objects passing through a door. According to the American Association of Automatic Door Manufacturers 98.9% of people surveyed said they preferred automatic doors to manual doors. In today’s busy society with so much to keep up with and address second by second, not even having to think about opening a door, makes sense. 


Advantages of using a pedestrian sensing automatic door for your business:

Disadvantages of using a pedestrian sensing automatic door for your business: 

 Automated sliding doors help facilities comply with certain ADA related codes for access. Commercial facilities also appreciate the ease with which patrons can enter their place of business. Just walk in, even while texting.

High tech motion sensors today are incredibly capable of picking up motion from people, so you likely won’t have to worry about your doors opening up if a bird flies by or some leaves blow through. As this technology can distinguish between approaching and departing traffic, these unidirectional sensors help improve a facility’s energy savings.

The disadvantages of automated doors include the higher cost of ownership and maintenance. The fact that the doors are motor driven infers a shorter mean time before failure (MTBF) than a manual door. Sliding doors are potentially less secure than a manual door swing or revolving door. Sliding doors can be lifted from their tracks using a variety of simple tools. Automated sliding doors opening & closing speeds are pre-programmed to meet ADA requirements.

In addition, they’re required to remain open for specified times as well. These requirements make for less than the optimum entrance or exit security. Having both doors open not only reduces security; it also exposes the lobby area to outside the elements. And thus increases utility costs.


Push Plate Automatic Doors

Push plate automatic doors
A compromise between standard doors and automatic sensor doors are push plate automated doors. These are doorways that are typically standard manual hinge doors, but can be opened automatically with the push of a button on the side of the door, most often to comply with ADA regulations, as many standard hinge doors can be difficult to open for some of our friends with physical disabilities. 
Advantages of using a push plate automatic door for your business:
Disadvantages of using a push plate automatic door for your business:
Push plates improve overall door access, enhance accessibility for those with limited mobility or disabilities and seamlessly integrate with an automatic door’s activation. They can be more cost-effective than fully automatic doors, and their infrequent automatic use saves energy.  Similar to a manual hinge door, opening this door will require the use of touch points which may deter more health-conscious consumers from your business. Push plates have an even higher potential for transmitting bacteria and other potentially infectious germs than traditional doors, as the small buttons mean that the microbes from previous button-pushers is more consolidated, nearly guaranteeing that you’re going to bringsomethingalong with you when you touch it.


Touchless Activation Doors

 Push plate automatic doors

These wave-to-open doors are similar to push plate doors, with the one exception being that instead of pushing a button to open the door automatically, you simply have to wave your hand in front of a sensor. 

Touchless activation provides the most advanced and hygienic form of automatic door activation. These devices can be used on all types of automatic doors to provide an aesthetically pleasing activation solution that maximizes accessibility.

 Advantages of using a wave-to-open automatic door for your business:

Disadvantages of using a wave-to-open automatic door for your business:

Touchless activation doors have all the same advantages of push plate automatic doors (low energy usage, manual use, ADA compliance, seamless integrations), but the touchless element of it also means that you would be virtually free of contacting infected surfaces.  Like fully-automatic hinge doors, touchless activation doors are more costly than manual hinge doors, and there are only a limited number of installers in the United States that can install and maintain doors like these. 


If your business is in the south Florida market, you’re in luck.Our team of installation experts are all perfectly capable of installing state of the art wave-to-open doors that are perfectly customizable for your business’ storefront or any other doorways where you might need it. 

Give us a call today or come see us in Delray Beach or Boynton Beach and get a free consultation to see how we can help you!