door closer with parallel arm

Door Closers: Parallel Arm vs. Regular Arm

Doors | Frames | Hardware | Life Safety

What are the differences between parallel arm closers and regular arm door closers? And how do you know which one to choose? We have broken down the details for each type to help you decide!

Parallel Arm Closers

When installing a parallel arm closer, the body of the closer is mounted onto the push side of the door and the closer arm is installed onto the frame. When the door is closed, the arm’s position is parallel with the top of the frame, which is the reason it is called a “parallel” arm closer. The position of this closer makes it less noticeable, more aesthetically pleasing, and reduces the opportunity for vandalism making it a popular choice for commercial properties and schools, particularly for openings with frequent use. Most doors with parallel arm closers are also able to open 180 degrees.

Parallel closers are customizable and allow for additional features. Some of these options include heavy-duty rigid arms, hold-open arms, built-in door stop features, and more. When considering the options, it is important to consult with an expert to ensure you are following building codes, especially when dealing with fire doors.

Regular Arm Closers

A regular arm closer’s body is mounted on the pull side of the door and the closer arm is installed onto the face of the frame head. Also known as a “standard” arm closer, when in the closed position, the arm juts out perpendicularly from the door which can make these closers less aesthetically pleasing. This type of closer allows the door to open 140 degrees.

When it comes to choosing which closer is best, most people choose the mounting method that hides the closer from the public view (push side or pull side), except when the degree of swing or exposure to vandalism needs to be considered.

In order to meet building codes and prevent costly damage over time, it is important to choose the right kind of door closer, whether that’s a parallel arm, a regular arm, or something else. The experts at LaForce are here to help with your next project, contact us today to get started!