To many, door hardware is merely the ‘nuts and bolts’ element of an installation that is a necessity that facilitates functionality. However, as one of the UK’s longest established hardware distributors, Carl F Groupco explains that the right fittings can convert an installation adding capability, transforming aesthetics and providing added value opportunities.
1. The space race
As home owners persevered through the pandemic, many properties were reassessed with people looking to maximise enjoyment of indoor space creating more room, aiding accessibility and merging indoor areas with gardens through the use of French doors, bi-fold products and lift and slide hardware.
Carl F Groupco has a long standing relationship with Siegenia and HS Portal lift-slide technology is a sophisticated solution which can operate sash weights for timber, PVCu and aluminium doors up to 400 kg safely, conveniently and effortlessly. Design simplicity is combined with sophistication – the HS Portal gearing enables a lift and slide door to be operated with just one finger.
The performance of the HS Portal was further enhanced with Siegenia’s introduction of the ECO PASS which provides a highly efficient and completely barrier free opening with only the running rail raised above the threshold of 5mm. Featuring a sophisticated 10 chamber profile designed to provide outstanding thermal insulation, the ECO PASS threshold complies with the principles of green building: the product’s single-piece construction, with integrated reinforcements, ensures total stability and significantly reduces manufacturing times.
Catering for the bi fold market is Siegenia’s FS Portal PLUS system which meets the needs of aluminium, PVCu and timber profiles and caters for home owners’ increasing desire for innovative door designs.
2. A technological edge:
Technology is another important current topic with considerable customer appeal. Access and monitoring capabilities are becoming increasingly critical, particularly in multiple occupancy buildings – at Carl F Groupco, the company’s SmartSecure brand specialises in hardware which meets this need providing advanced technology for entrance doors.
Offering intuitive hardware solutions, SmartSecure’s electronic door locking and access control options include SmartConnect - designed for easy door opening using a Smartphone, this WLAN-based system offers keyless operation and monitoring. SmartTouch is a second variant: activated by movement of a fob, like Smart car technology, the solution allows a door to be unlocked with simple touch control. Radio-based access control systems are also available including a radio keypad, transponder and fingerprint scanner for keyless biometric access management. The FUHR electromechanical door locks incorporated in SmartSecure maximise project flexibility as they are compatible with most access and building control systems.
As we cautiously emerge from the corona crisis, when upselling door technology access control capability is at its most compelling and the style, simplicity and track record of SmartSecure are a persuasive combination.
3. Peace of mind
Providing tested and accredited hardware that gives peace of mind to the end user is another strong attraction for purchasers. It should never be assumed that security accreditation is a given with all hardware, and a product’s security appeal is significantly enhanced with endorsements such as PAS 24 and Secured by Design - the national police crime prevention campaign that delivers a wide range of crime prevention initiatives. Significant products in Carl F Groupco’s catalogue that are endorsed by SBD include the FUHR 881 multitronic lock, which is at the heart of SmartSecure.
4. Functional factors
Increased functionality through specialist hardware catches the eye of end users such as automatic locking products and stable doors. One example of a popular product supplied by Carl F Groupco is FUHR Stable Door gearing that comprises two locking mechanisms which can operate independently or in tandem. The gearing is a simple addition which opens up options and enhancements for end users that they may not previously have been aware of.
5. Safety matters
Safety is of paramount importance to all end users whether in the residential or commercial sector. Hardware with protective features will therefore help to increase the appeal of a door and it shouldn’t be assumed that safety attributes will be a known quantity. FUHR 870 gearing, for example, offers fully concealed multipoint locking while offering options for EN 179 emergency escape or EN 1125 for panic exit compliance: this gives commercial fabricators scope to offer extended options for door types suitable for an installation.
In conclusion, Carl F Groupco observes that hardware is often the unsung hero of door fabrication but fittings offer a number of facets that offer potential to enhance a sale with added features, functionality and value.