Code excerpt regarding technical requirements for doors, doorways, and gates: general, manual, and automatic and power-assisted.
11B-404 Doors, doorways, and gates
11B-404.1 General. Doors, doorways, and gates that are part of an accessible route shall comply with Section 11B-404.
Doors, doorways, and gates designed to be operated only by security personnel shall not be required to comply with Sections 11B-404.2.7, 11B-404.2.8, 11B-404.2.9, 11B-404.3.2 and 11B-404.3.4 through 11B-404.3.7. A sign visible from the approach side complying with Section 11B-703.5 shall be posted stating “Entry restricted and controlled by security personnel”.
At detention and correctional facilities, doors, doorways, and gates designed to be operated only by security personnel shall not be required to comply with Sections 11B-404.2.7, 11B-404.2.8, 11B-404.2.9, 11B-404.3.2 and 11B-404.3.4 through 11B-404.3.7.
Advisory 11B-404.1 General Exceptions 1 and 2. Security personnel must have sole control of doors that are eligible for the Exceptions 1 and 2 at Section 11B-404.1. It would not be acceptable for security personnel to operate the doors for people with disabilities while allowing others to have independent access.
11B-404.2 Manual doors, doorways, and manual gates. Manual doors and doorways and manual gates intended for user passage shall comply with Section 11B-404.2.
11B-404.2.1 Revolving doors, gates, and turnstiles. Revolving doors, revolving gates, and turnstiles shall not be part of an accessible route.
11B-404.2.2 Double-leaf doors and gates. At least one of the active leaves of doorways with two leaves shall comply with Sections 11B-404.2.3 and 11B-404.2.4.
11B-404.2.3 Clear width. Door openings shall provide a clear width of 32 inches (813 mm) minimum. Clear openings of doorways with swinging doors shall be measured between the face of the door and the stop, with the door open 90 degrees. Openings more than 24 inches (610 mm) deep shall provide a clear opening of 36 inches (914 mm) minimum. There shall be no projections into the required clear opening width lower than 34 inches (864 mm) above the finish floor or ground. Projections into the clear opening width between 34 inches (864 mm) and 80 inches (2032 mm) above the finish floor or ground shall not exceed 4 inches (102 mm).
In alterations, a projection of 5/8 inch (15.9 mm) maximum into the required clear width shall be permitted for the latch side stop.
Door closers and door stops shall be permitted to be 78 inches (1981 mm) minimum above the finish floor or ground.
11B-404.2.4 Maneuvering clearances. Minimum maneuvering clearances at doors and gates shall comply with Section 11B-404.2.4. Maneuvering clearances shall extend the full width of the doorway and the required latch side or hinge side clearance.
11B-404.2.4.1 Swinging doors and gates. Swinging doors and gates shall have maneuvering clearances complying with Table 11B-404.2.4.1.
Table 11B-404.2.4.1 Maneuvering Clearances at Manual Swinging Doors and Gates
Type of Use
Minimum Maneuvering Clearance
Door or Gate Side
Perpendicular to Doorway
Parallel to Doorway (beyond latch side unless noted)
Add 12 inches (305 mm) if closer and latch are provided.
Add 4 inches (102 mm) if closer and latch are provided.
Beyond hinge side.
Add 4 inches (102 mm) if closer is provided.
Add 6 inches (152 mm) at exterior side of exterior doors.
11B-404.2.4.2 Doorways without doors or gates, sliding doors, and folding doors. Doorways less than 36 inches (914 mm) wide without doors or gates, sliding doors, or folding doors shall have maneuvering clearances complying with Table 11B-404.2.4.2.
Table 11B-404.2.4.2 Maneuvering Clearances at Doorways without Doors or Gates, Manual Sliding Doors, and Manual Folding Doors
Minimum Maneuvering Clearance
Perpendicular to Doorway
Parallel to Doorway (beyond stop/latch side unless noted)
11B-404.2.4.3 Recessed doors and gates. Maneuvering clearances for forward approach shall be provided when any obstruction within 18 inches (457 mm) of the latch side at an interior doorway, or within 24 inches (610 mm) of the latch side of an exterior doorway, projects more than 8 inches (203 mm) beyond the face of the door, measured perpendicular to the face of the door or gate.
Advisory 11B-404.2.4.3 Recessed doors and gates. A door can be recessed due to wall thickness or because of the placement of casework and other fixed elements adjacent to the doorway. This provision must be applied wherever doors are recessed.
11B-404.2.4.4 Floor or ground surface. Floor or ground surface within required maneuvering clearances shall comply with Section 11B-302. Changes in level are not permitted.
Slopes not steeper than 1:48 shall be permitted.
Changes in level at thresholds complying with Section 11B-404.2.5 shall be permitted.
11B-404.2.5 Thresholds. Thresholds, if provided at doorways, shall be 1/2 inch (12.7 mm) high maximum. Raised thresholds and changes in level at doorways shall comply with Sections 11B-302 and 11B-303.
11B-404.2.6 Doors in series and gates in series. The distance between two hinged or pivoted doors in series and gates in series shall be 48 inches (1219 mm) minimum plus the width of doors or gates swinging into the space.
11B-404.2.7 Door and gate hardware. Handles, pulls, latches, locks, and other operable parts on doors and gates shall comply with Section 11B-309.4. Operable parts of such hardware shall be 34 inches (864 mm) minimum and 44 inches (1118 mm) maximum above the finish floor or ground. Where sliding doors are in the fully open position, operating hardware shall be exposed and usable from both sides.
Existing locks shall be permitted in any location at existing glazed doors without stiles, existing overhead rolling doors or grilles, and similar existing doors or grilles that are designed with locks that are activated only at the top or bottom rail.
Access gates in barrier walls and fences protecting pools, spas, and hot tubs shall be permitted to have operable parts of the release of latch on self-latching devices at 54 inches (1372 mm) maximum above the finish floor or ground provided the self-latching devices are not also self-locking devices and operated by means of a key, electronic opener, or integral combination lock.
Advisory 11B-404.2.7 Door and gate hardware. Door hardware that can be operated with a closed fist or a loose grip accommodates the greatest range of users. Hardware that requires simultaneous hand and finger movements require greater dexterity and coordination, and is not recommended.
Advisory 11B-404.2.7 Door and gate hardware. In addition to the requirements of this section, designers should be aware of the Part 12, Section 12-10-202(f) requirement for lever hardware as adopted by the State Fire Marshal. The lever of lever actuated latches or locks must be curved with a return to within 1/2 inch of the door to prevent catching on the clothing of persons during egress.
11B-404.2.8 Door closing speed. Door and gate closing speed shall comply with Section 11B-404.2.8.
11B-404.2.8.1 Door closers and gate closers. Door closers and gate closers shall be adjusted so that from an open position of 90 degrees, the time required to move the door to a position of 12 degrees from the latch is 5 seconds minimum.
11B-404.2.8.2 Spring hinges. Door and gate spring hinges shall be adjusted so that from the open position of 70 degrees, the door or gate shall move to the closed position in 1.5 seconds minimum.
11B-404.2.9 Door and gate opening force. The force for pushing or pulling open a door or gate shall be as follows:
Interior hinged doors and gates: 5 pounds (22.2 N) maximum.
Sliding or folding doors: 5 pounds (22.2 N) maximum.
Required fire doors: the minimum opening force allowable by the appropriate administrative authority, not to exceed 15 pounds (66.7 N).
Exterior hinged doors: 5 pounds (22.2 N) maximum.
These forces do not apply to the force required to retract latch bolts or disengage other devices that hold the door or gate in a closed position.
Exception: When, at a single location, one of every eight exterior door leafs, or fraction of eight, is a powered door, other exterior doors at the same location, serving the same interior space, may have a maximum opening force of 8.5 pounds (37.8 N). The powered leaf(s) shall be located closest to the accessible route.
Powered doors shall comply with Section 11B-404.3. Powered doors shall be fully automatic doors complying with Builders Hardware Manufacturers’ Association (BHMA) A156.10 or low energy operated doors complying with BHMA A156.19.
Powered doors serving a building or facility with an occupancy of 150 or more shall be provided with a back-up battery or back-up generator. The back-up power source shall be able to cycle the door a minimum of 100 cycles.
Powered doors shall be controlled on both the interior and exterior sides of the doors by sensing devices, push plates, vertical actuation bars or other similar operating devices complying with Sections 11B-304, 11B-305 and 11B-308. ¶ At each location where push plates are provided there shall be two push plates; the centerline of one push plate shall be 7 inches (178 mm) minimum and 8 inches (203 mm) maximum above the floor or ground surface and the centerline of the second push plate shall be 30 inches (762 mm) minimum and 44 inches (1118 mm) maximum above the floor or ground surface. Each push plate shall be a minimum of 4 inches (102 mm) diameter or a minimum of 4 inches by 4 inches (102 mm by 102 mm) square and shall display the International Symbol of Accessibility complying with Section 11B-703.7. ¶ At each location where vertical actuation bars are provided the operable portion shall be located so the bottom is 5 inches (127 mm) maximum above the floor or ground surface and the top is 35 inches (889 mm) minimum above the floor or ground surface. The operable portion of each vertical actuation bar shall be a minimum of 2 inches (51 mm) wide and shall display the International Symbol of Accessibility complying with Section 11B-703.7. ¶ Where push plates, vertical actuation bars or other similar operating devices are provided, they shall be placed in a conspicuous location. A level and clear floor or ground space for forward or parallel approach complying with Section 11B-305 shall be provided, centered on the operating device. Doors shall not swing into the required clear floor or ground space.
Signs identifying the accessible entrance required by Section 11B-216.6 shall be placed on, or immediately adjacent to, each powered door. Signs shall be provided in compliance with BHMA A156.10 or BHMA 156.19, as applicable.
In addition to the requirements of Item d, where a powered door is provided in buildings or facilities containing assembly occupancies of 300 or more, a sign displaying the International Symbol of Accessibility measuring 6 inches by 6 inches (152 mm by 152 mm), complying with Section 11B-703.7, shall be provided above the door on both the interior and exterior sides of each powered door.
Advisory 11B-404.2.9 Door and gate opening force. The maximum force pertains to the continuous application of force necessary to fully open a door, not the initial force needed to overcome the inertia of the door. It does not apply to the force required to retract bolts or to disengage other devices used to keep the door in a closed position.
11B-404.2.10 Door and gate surfaces. Swinging door and gate surfaces within 10 inches (254 mm) of the finish floor or ground measured vertically shall have a smooth surface on the push side extending the full width of the door or gate. Parts creating horizontal or vertical joints in these surfaces shall be within 1/16 inch (1.6 mm) of the same plane as the other and be free of sharp or abrasive edges. Cavities created by added kick plates shall be capped.
Sliding doors shall not be required to comply with Section 11B-404.2.10.
Tempered glass doors without stiles and having a bottom rail or shoe with the top leading edge tapered at 60 degrees minimum from the horizontal shall not be required to meet the 10 inch (254 mm) bottom smooth surface height requirement.
Doors and gates that do not extend to within 10 inches (254 mm) of the finish floor or ground shall not be required to comply with Section 11B-404.2.10.
11B-404.2.11 Vision lights. Doors, gates, and side lights adjacent to doors or gates, containing one or more glazing panels that permit viewing through the panels shall have the bottom of at least one glazed panel located 43 inches (1092 mm) maximum above the finish floor.
Exception:Glazing panels with the lowest part more than 66 inches (1676 mm) from the finish floor or ground shall not be required to comply with Section 11B-404.2.11.
11B-404.3 Automatic and power-assisted doors and gates. Automatic doors and automatic gates shall comply with Section 11B-404.3. Full-powered automatic doors shall comply with ANSI/BHMA A156.10. Low-energy and power-assisted doors shall comply with ANSI/BHMA A156.19.
Advisory 11B-404.3 Automatic and power-assisted doors and gates. Automatic and power-assisted doors are often used by designers to provide accessibility when door closer pressure would exceed the allowable opening force for interior or exterior doors. Heavy doors are difficult to open for persons using wheelchairs because holding the door open with one hand requires the user to let go of one wheel—not enough control remains to prevent the chair from twisting out of the intended direction. An automatic door may be used as equivalent facilitation when it is technically infeasible to provide sufficient strike-side clearance for code compliance, but a power-assisted door may not.
11B-404.3.1 Clear width. Doorways shall provide a clear opening of 32 inches (813 mm) minimum in power-on and power-off mode. The minimum clear width for automatic door systems in a doorway shall provide a clear, unobstructed opening of 32 inches (813 mm) with one leaf positioned at an angle of 90 degrees from its closed position.
11B-404.3.2 Maneuvering clearance. Clearances at power-assisted doors and gates shall comply with Section 11B-404.2.4. Clearances at automatic doors and gates without standby power and serving an accessible means of egress shall comply with Section 11B-404.2.4.
Exception: Where automatic doors and gates remain open in the power-off condition, compliance with Section 11B-404.2.4 shall not be required.
11B-404.3.3 Thresholds. Thresholds and changes in level at doorways shall comply with Section 11B-404.2.5.
11B-404.3.4 Doors in series and gates in series. Doors in series and gates in series shall comply with Section 11B-404.2.6.
11B-404.3.5 Controls. Manually operated controls shall comply with Section 11B-309. The clear floor space adjacent to the control shall be located beyond the arc of the door swing.
Advisory 11B-404.3.5 Controls. Where push plates, vertical actuation bars or other similar operating devices are provided, they shall be placed in a conspicuous location. A level and clear floor or ground space for forward or parallel approach complying with Section 11B-305 should be provided, centered on the operating device. Doors should not swing into the required clear floor or ground space for the operating device.
11B-404.3.6 Break out opening. Where doors and gates without standby power are a part of a means of egress, the clear break out opening at swinging or sliding doors and gates shall be 32 inches (813 mm) minimum when operated in emergency mode.
Exception: Where manual swinging doors and gates comply with Section 11B-404.2 and serve the same means of egress compliance with Section 11B-404.3.6 shall not be required.
11B-404.3.7 Revolving doors, revolving gates, and turnstiles. Revolving doors, revolving gates, and turnstiles shall not be part of an accessible route.