A host of new products have suddenly come out in response to the need for touchless entry.  For commercial doors there are a variety of new products for pushing and pulling open doors with your foot (metal L-shaped plates at the base of the door), and also a variety of metal handles which allow for opening doors with the wrist, forearm, or elbow, instead of the hand.  These are curved metal handles coming out from the door at chest height. Do a Google search under “touchless entry” to see products and photos. Mountain Locksmith installs most of these products for around $60.00 per door.

Apart from no-hand-use handles, true touchless entry is dependent upon one rather expensive item: a door opener.  Door openers start at about $1600.00 installed.  They are used in conjunction with motion detectors, electric strikes, wave sensors, and proximity devices.

In the absence of access control (when everyone is allowed immediate entry), a motion detector or a wave sensor can be used to activate the door opener.  When more restricted access is required, a motion detector, electric strike, or mag lock may be used to allow individual access upon visual consideration.

For full access control, a card, fob or tag is used to activate a card reader (on the wall beside the door), which sends a signal permitting the activation of an electrical lock. In true access control, only certain individuals, with the requisite cards, fobs or tags, are allowed to enter at certain times and into certain areas, and the system records who has entered, when, and to what areas. This is called an audit trail.   Complete systems are set up depending on the number of users, and the number of doors.

Over the last ten years, many businesses have installed card readers and electrical locks which are basically commercial levers with a battery pack.  These locks are activated by waving a card, fob or tag at a card reader (proximity device), which activates the lock, allowing the latch to be retracted when the lever is pushed down. These levers are generally storeroom function: always open on the inside, always locked (unless activated) on the outside.   This is not truly touchless entry, unless the elbow is used to push down the lever, instead of the hand. I suspect products will soon be coming out to allow easier lever use with wrist, forearm and elbow.

It’s important to point out at this point that the use of disposable gloves by employees and clients will not prevent and will in fact facilitate the spread of viruses throughout a facility, unless those gloves are immediately disposed of after touching just one lever, or just one handle.

In any proximity system, after you’ve waved your card, fob or tag, and pressed down on a lever with your elbow, what do you grab onto in order to open the door?  You’re going to need either very strong, sharp elbows, or a different operating system.  Mountain Locksmith can help you with these changes.  Please call for free consultation and free estimates.