News & Media

How to make the most of University summer downtime

What could universities be doing to utilise the time when students are not on campus?

You could take this opportunity and utilise university downtime for training and maintenance. What also could be helpful for the estates and facilities department is to take this opportunity to get your staff fully trained or update their door security and access training.

This is easily done with dormakaba products as the mobile showroom would come to you. With expert assistance on-hand from our knowledgeable consultants, the dormakaba mobile showroom is an ideal way to bring maintenance staff up to date on door hardware compliance and to get up-to-date training on all dormakaba products which you have on campus from access control to automatics to mechanical key systems.


Inside the showroom, customers will find products including Entrance Systems, Door hardware, Mechanical Key Systems, Lodging Systems, Electronic Access & Data, Interior Glass Systems and safe locks. In 2016, we commissioned a new truck to provide visitors with a modern, hands on experience of our comprehensive product portfolio.

The Importance of regular service and maintenance

On a typical building the doors and door hardware are among the most heavily used elements. In high traffic areas such as corridors, door components and operators will be subjected to thousands of open/close cycles a year and potentially millions throughout the life of the product. For this reason, establishing an appropriate and regular service and maintenance schedule is crucial.

Current Health & Safety legislation require that all automatic doors, barriers and gates are regularly maintained and serviced by a trained personnel. To ensure the safe working and security of all types of automated doors it is recommended that maintenance is carried out regularly. The standard recommended frequency for servicing automatic doors is at least once a year and fire doors every 6 months.

If fire doors and manually operated doors are not properly maintained and their performance declines over time, the doors may stick and become difficult to open or fail to close once opened. The consequences of this can range from possible non-compliance with fire and access legislation to serious risks to people and the building itself if a fire door is rendered ineffective in the event of a fire.

Doors that do not close adequately can also impact on the security of the building. Control over who has access to the building often relies on locks engaging correctly when the door closes. If this does not occur it may allow unauthorised access or cause inaccuracies in the records of who has entered and exited the building.

Providing ease of access

A further function of planned maintenance and servicing is ensuring that the building remains fully accessible to everyone. If door maintenance is disregarded and the hardware no longer complies, building users in general, and specifically occupants with disabilities may struggle to open the doors. Approved Document M in England and Wales, Section 3 in Scotland and Part R in Northern Ireland all state that: “…a door set must produce an opening force of below 30N between 0° and 30° degrees and below 22.5N between 30° and 60° degrees.” 

The high level of use that entrance, delivery and internal doors are subject to, alongside the complexity of meeting Health & safety, fire and access legislation means it is vital to schedule regular service and maintenance. While budgetary constraints may require savings to be made, the immediate cost benefit achieved by postponing maintenance is often out-weighed by the larger cost of additional repair work and even replacement of hardware if doors are neglected.

At dormakaba we can plan and arrange such maintenance checks to be carried out in the holiday periods, when students are not on campus to help minimise disruption.

And what about edtech? How can technology on campus help future-proof university facilities?

Installing smart technology on campus such as an integrated access control system can steady and control the stream of traffic coming onto the university campus allowing it to be opened to the public during university downtime to make the most use of the facilities while students are away.

York University is an excellent example of where access rights are adapted for many users and for different uses around campus. Access rights can be controlled across the university with a large population of people – containing groups with discrete access permissions and needs. Also, demonstrating the integration of online and offline access control, whilst the online system is integrated into the enterprise resource planning (ERP) and human resources (HR) system. The system installed at York University delivers cost effective, flexible access control on any door, barrier, lift or access point with a scalable solution, to cover all future developments.


The University of York bears testa­ment to the success of a complete dormakaba solution. dormakaba technology has ensured all online and standalone systems can be integrated which not only provides diversity in levels of security but also future proofs the University of York’s investment.

As featured in University Business. Read the full article here.