In this article: Necessary and auxiliary door hardware; types and characteristics of door hinges; types of handles for interior doors; auxiliary fittings – travel stop, latch, door closer; how to choose fittings for interior doors.
If the front door serves as a barrier between the outer and inner world of apartments and houses, then the interior doors separate the common family premises from the personal space of each family member – families with more than two people cannot do without them. You can, of course, visually divide the premises into so-called work areas, using light, various flooring and decorative elements for this, but it will not be possible to completely hide your personal world behind them. The interior door itself is a rectangular sheet, the properties of which are largely determined by the door hardware.
A millennium ago, door fittings were mainly intended for entrance doors – internal doors and locks on them were considered excessive luxury, the role of a door was most often played by some kind of curtain. Today, the task of fittings for interior doors is to combine maximum comfort for residents and harmony with the style of the door leaf and the design of the living space as a whole..
In contrast to the hardware of the entrance doors on the internal doors, its elements are visible. Particularly striking is the dissonance of the hardware elements in color, both among themselves and with the color of the door leaf – for this reason, Western manufacturers of door hardware offer homeowners complete sets made in the same style and color..
Modern fittings for interior doors are divided into two groups – necessary, without which it will be impossible to use the door, and auxiliary, designed to create more comfort for household members. In the first group there are door hinges and door handles, in the second there are travel stops, door closers and latches. It should be noted that locks do not belong to door hardware..
They can be detachable and one-piece, overhead (hinged) and screw-in, one-sided hinged and universal.
Detachable hinges are much more convenient than one-piece hinges – if necessary, bring a bulky piece of furniture into the room or, in preparation for repair, the sash of doors with detachable hinges can be removed from the jamb and put aside. There are two types of detachable door hinges – the pin of one half of the hinge engages with the groove of the other (each half of such hinges is called a “card”) or two halves of one hinge, equipped with lugs, are interconnected by a retractable axial pin. The door leaf, equipped with hinges of the first type, can be easily removed – just lift it up. Hinges with an axial pin are much more difficult to disconnect, since over the years of operation they are deformed, the pin is partially abraded – often, to remove the door leaf, you have to unscrew the fasteners of one of the hinge halves. After this operation, the hinges with the axial pin will have to be replaced with new ones – they will hardly be able to put them in their original place, and the reliability of the connection will not be the same.
Screw-in and overhead door hinges differ in design and method of attachment to the door leaf and jamb. The metal plates of the overhead hinges, for which you have to cut out small grooves in the end of the door and the jamb, are absent in the design of screwed hinges – each half of them is equipped with a rigidly fixed pin and a screw, holes are drilled under the pins in the jamb and the end of the door, then screws are screwed. The main problem of overhead hinges, if you do not take into account their excessive visibility, is associated with replacement in the event of a breakdown – you have to look for hinges whose shape and size of the plates coincide with those previously installed.
Universal hinges allow their installation on the door, regardless of the direction of opening the sash “towards yourself” or “away from you”, that is, they have a wider specialization. On the other hand, universal hinges do not allow their separation and it is impossible to remove the sash without complete dismantling in the case of these hinges..
What does our hand reach when opening or closing a door? Of course, to the door handle – it is the most noticeable and indispensable element for any door, interior doors without this piece of hardware cannot be opened in any way. There are three main types of door handle designs – stationary (staple handles), push (latch) and ball handles (knobs).
Stationary handles, the simplest and oldest type of door hardware, have no connection with the door lock, they are fixed on the door leaf motionlessly and rigidly. To open or close a door with a stationary handle, you just need to grab it, pull it towards you or push it away from you. For their shape, similar to the letter “P”, stationary handles are called “staple”.
Push-type door handles are equipped with a simple lock with a latch latch – pressing such a handle pushes the latch (bolt) of the latch out of the slot in the jamb and the door opens. It is worth releasing the handle and the spring will push the latch back, returning the handle to the opposite position. Push-type handles use two design options – with separate and solid plates. In the first version, a rounded rose strip mounted between the handle and the door leaf is not connected to the handle itself and is fastened with screws through the door leaf to the plate on the opposite side. In the second version, the plate is much larger and has a rectangular shape with rounded corners, in addition to the hole for the square pin, on which the handles are attached and which connects the handles on opposite sides of the door, there is a hole for the lock cylinder (cylinder). Of course, for interior doors, door handles with separate rosette overlays are more often used..
The knob-knob mechanism works on the same principle as the lever handles, only instead of pressing these door handles you need to turn. There are three main options for the mechanisms of such door handles – simple snapping, latching with one-sided fixing or with fixing and locking with a lock of a simple design. It should be noted here that in all fixing options, only the movement of the handle is blocked, but the latch mechanism remains free, that is, with the handle locked, the door can be opened using a small diameter hole under the handle and a thin knitting needle or screwdriver. Knobs are easy to install and easy to use, and their spherical, tapered or tapered handles work equally well with a variety of interior styles. However, before deciding to install a knob handle, you need to take into account that it will not be easy to install a door handle of a different type in the place where the ball handle was previously installed – one of the holes cut in the door leaf for the knob handle will be almost 50 mm diameter.
GOST 5089-97 applies to latch latches of lever handles and knob handles.
Espagnolettes.They are necessary for double-leaf interior doors, they are used to fix the position of one of the leaves. The design of the bolts is simple – the tongue is moved up and down manually using a short handle. Overhead, built-in and mortise latches are produced.
Travel stop or stopper.It is made of metal and is designed to create an obstacle to the door leaf when it is fully opened; when properly installed, it prevents the door handle from hitting the wall. To avoid possible scratches when it comes into contact with the door leaf stopper, its contact side is equipped with a rubber bumper. Depending on the design, the travel stops can be floor or wall mounted.
Door closer.By the method of installation, it can be top, floor and internal (frame), by design – knee and linear. Designed to damp the door when opening and automatically close. Adjustable opening and closing speeds, as a rule, accelerate the closing speed of the door in its last phase to engage the lock. Some models allow the sash to be fixed in the open position, which is convenient when moving large pieces of furniture. Depending on the spring reinforcement, weight and dimensions of the door leaf, there are several classes of door closers – from EN1 to EN7.
How to choose fittings for interior doors
The cost of fittings is determined by two main parameters – the material from which it is made and the production technology. In other words, the complexity of the production technology and the cost of the material are the main criteria in the question of price. The cheapest fittings are made from plastic, wood, silumin and brass, the more expensive – from steel and bronze alloys.
Choosing hinges.When choosing hinges, pay attention to the size of the gap between the two halves, folding them towards each other – ideally, there should be no gap. For interior doors with a low weight, polished brass hinges are well suited – hinges with chrome and nickel plating are not resistant to scratches, moreover, they change color over time.
Doorknobs. They should be comfortable and pleasant to the touch, because you will have to deal with them for more than one year. The low cost and light weight of a doorknob means that the paint will wear out soon, the handle is not strong enough and very soon it will break. For an interior door, a handle made of brass or steel is suitable, with two or three layers of paint and varnish applied to it. When choosing, you should pay attention to recognized brands, including the Italian M.B.C. and Fuaro, Armadillo and Adept, Mandelli and Mariani, German Hoppe and Eco, Jado and Shuring, door handles from the Russian manufacturer Apecs are of good quality. The cost of push-type door handles for interior doors depends on the material of manufacture and design. Knob pens are cheaper. Make sure that the doorknob meets the following requirements: its movement is smooth, without any difficulty; the mechanism easily returns the tongue to its original position when the handle is released from pressure; when the handle is turned by 25-30 °, the locking tongue completely goes inside.
Espagnolette.If it is planned to install a bolt on a frame door with a frame thickness of up to 25 mm, then it is worth choosing an overhead bolt that does not require a tie-in into the door leaf – for built-in and mortise latches, it is necessary to cut grooves that will weaken the door structure. The overhead latch looks, of course, too noticeable, but with high-quality performance, it is guaranteed not to hurt your fingers when opening and closing.
Door travel stop.When choosing this element of door hardware, pay attention to the thickness of the metal and the rubber bumper strip – a thin metal body will break when the door leaf is hit hard, a thin and insufficiently elastic pad will damage the door leaf.
Door closer.Its choice is based on the weight, material of manufacture and dimensions of the door leaf for which it is intended – the heavier and wider the door leaf, the more powerful the door closer should be. When choosing a closer, pay attention to such technical parameters as the speed of closing the door and the braking force when opening it. The value of the first parameter will determine whether a person will have time to go through the doorway before the door closed by the door closer hits him on the back, from the second – whether the door leaf will not hit the wall when it is opened with force.
It is most convenient to purchase hardware elements at the same time as interior doors, especially if there are several doors and wholesale hardware is required, with appropriate discounts. In this case, installation on door leaves can be entrusted to the seller, and not to look for and separately pay for a third-party contractor.