The Top 5 Mistakes Made When Choosing Electronic Door Components

Choosing electronic components for your doors can be very expensive when mistakes are made. In fact, errors in ordering and installing door components account for some of the costliest errors in the security industry. Here are the five biggest mistakes made when choosing electronic door components, and why it pays to work with someone who is knowledgeable about intricacies of ordering this hardware.

Mistake #1: Cutting costs and sacrificing function

While it’s tempting to DIY to keep costs down, this is often an expensive mistake. It’s challenging to understand electronic door components without prior experience, and even one misordered part can ruin the whole system. There are several things to remember:

  • Cutting costs reduces durability: Often, the higher cost associated with door parts is due to their increased durability. Door strikes, for example, vary in price range and may only be guaranteed for a certain number of cycles. A cheaper door strike will fail quickly in a high-volume environment, like in a college dorm or the front door of a business.
  • Custom-made parts aren’t returnable: In many cases, electronic door components need to be custom made to fit with a specific door or work with an existing access control system. Once a piece is custom-made, it typically can’t be returned.
  • Errors cause costly repairs: Errors made in choosing and installing electronic door parts can damage the structural integrity of the door frame. More expensive upgrades may be required to resolve those issues.

Aiming for the lowest cost components results in a system that doesn’t function well. That means all the money invested is wasted. Using the services of an expert in selecting components can save money in the long-run.

Mistake #2: Relying on insufficient power sources

One of the easiest mistakes to make is failing to plan around power. Often, systems labeled as “wireless” will still require a power source. Battery backups need consistent charging to ensure they work in the event of an outage. If your power source isn’t sufficient for the door, the entire system will require updating, which is costly.

Mistake #3: Ordering incompatible locks

Electronic locks are complex. They involve a lot of moving parts and have a very specific listing of compatible elements. Also, monitoring and repairing these locks can often cause confusion, especially if multiple systems aren’t integrated. Making a mistake when ordering an incompatible lock can cost you.

Mistake #4: Not complying with building codes

It’s important to be aware of standard building codes when choosing electronic door components. For example, a heavyweight door can’t be used in a lightweight frame. This would bow the door over time, requiring an expensive repair. An experienced installer will be able to ensure structural soundness.

Mistake #5: Failing to integrate

The biggest mistake made when choosing electronic door components comes from not incorporating those components into an existing security system. All the issues noted above can be resolved through designing an integrated plan including:

  1. Value engineering: Value engineers focus on how to limit costs while improving function simultaneously. This involves reviewing old designs and seeing how they can be enhanced with the addition of new, integrated components.
  2. Client education: Security integrators make client education a priority. Clients won’t buy items that don’t work with existing power sources if they understand how their new components combine with their electrical setup.
  3. Solutions over components: Integrators look at solutions ahead of parts. Instead of trying to work around incompatible locks, they design the system first.
  4. Engineer-designed infrastructures: When a security integrator reviews the existing system, they’ll look at ways to make doors lock more effectively. They’ll seek out options for combining them with other systems like access control, visitor management, surveillance and other ways to collect information on entries and exits.

Integration resolves issues in choosing electronic components for doors by taking a big-picture approach. Rather than trying to design around components or cobbling a solution together piecemeal, integrators create a seamless experience. This solution saves time and money while building highly functioning security systems.   

At 3Sixty Integrated, we can help in choosing electronic door components that work the best with your existing security infrastructure. Whether you’re seeking a full system upgrade, or just adding a few components to your access control, our expert engineers can offer comprehensive solutions. For more information, call (210) 545-1770 or fill out our contact form.