Houston, Texas

Do you remember someone holding open a large metal door with a bar across it as you went outside during a school fire drill? That bar is actually known as a crash bar. Also known as panic bars, this item is a type of panic hardware. Panic hardware refers to any equipment used for emergency exits in commercial buildings. 

This hardware has been present in commercial buildings across the U.S. since the 1910s, following many tragedies that could have been prevented with the presence of better emergency exit hardware, including the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire in New York. The crash bar is just one part of the panic hardware family. In exploring the panic hardware family, we will teach you all about crash bar door hardware. 

What Is A Crash Bar? 

A crash bar is a long metal bar that you push to open large doors in commercial buildings during a drill or emergency. They spring in the metal bar works to prevent bottlenecking and overcrowding as people exit a commercial building. Crash bars can be found in commercial buildings such as schools, hospitals, places with advanced electrical equipment, various assembly venues, and other buildings with occupancy above one hundred people.

What Are The Regulations for Crash Bar Door Hardware? 

Just as there are codes and guidelines for building a house in a different neighborhood, there are also rules and regulations involved when installing crash bar door hardware. According to OSHA, any building with a capacity of one hundred people or more must be equipped with no fewer than two emergency exits with crash bars. They also need to be easily opened from the inside without a key. In addition to these parameters laid out by OSHA, a commercial building must comply with state and local safety guidelines and meet ADA criteria for accessibility. 

What Types of Crash Bar Door Hardware Exist? 

Finally, let’s talk about crash bar door hardware. While all crash bars probably appear to be the same at first glance, there are actually there kinds of crash bar door hardware commonly found in commercial buildings. 

1. Vertical Rod Crash Bars

Vertical rod crash bars are the most common type of crash bar door hardware in commercial buildings. They come in two subtypes: surface vertical rod and concealed vertical rod. Surface vertical rod crash bars, in addition to the crash bar itself, also include a vertical locking mechanism attached at the top and bottom of the door instead of the sides. Concealed vertical rod crash bars, on the other hand, only differ from the surface variety in that the vertical rods are found inside, not outside doors. 

2. Rim 

The next type of crash bar you are likely to see in many commercial buildings is the rim exit device. This type of crash bar latches to and is secured by the door frame and is found on single and double doors. 

crash bar door hardware

3. Mortise Lock 

The mortise lock crash bar is known for being particularly sturdy, with its latch mechanism being located inside the door. This crash bar’s internal latch mechanism provides an extra layer of security and can be installed on single and double doors. 

Spider Locksmith Is Here For Your Panic Hardware Needs! 

Hopefully, you feel more comfortable in your knowledge about crash bar door hardware than before. Maybe next time you find yourself in a commercial building and pass by any emergency exits, you’ll easily be able to recognize what kind of crash bar door hardware is utilized. If you are searching for the best panic hardware for your place of work, then hopefully, this blog helped clarify any of your questions about crash bar door hardware. If you are looking for the best service to install said panic hardware, contact us at Spider Locksmith to ensure your commercial building is prepared for any emergency.