Why would I use an AUTOMATIC sliding door closer?

  • The Inventco Water Door Closer is simply a great investment for any home with sliding security screen doors. An automatic closer will improve your family’s hygiene level by keeping germ carrying insects, flies, mosquitoes and other vermin out of the home.
  • When used in conjunction with an approved pool fence, an automatic closing security screen door having the latch fitted high up beyond reach can be a perfect doubling up of pool safety for young at-risk children while still allowing older children access to the outside. Such an approach ensures that young children can be contained safely within the house when required. Pool fences alone can create a false sense of security. Many younger children gain entry to a pool and drown when older children have propped open pool gates for ready access in and out of the pool area as they play, or when they have moved patio furniture about.

Do you have a Technical Overview document that I can download and read on the Version One (no longer in production) and latest S3 Water Door Closer?

INTRODUCTION

Sliding door closers have the same basic function to perform regardless of brand – to close a door in about 4 to 7 seconds, which from our feedback, is the acceptable time range. The Inventco Water Door Closer has been designed to smoothly and slowly close a door without slamming, reliably year after year. It has only one moving part, which has undergone accelerated testing equivalent to more than 20 years.

The Inventco door closer is available through distributers in major cities and from other stockists-installers throughout Australia. It comes in a wide range of popular Dulux powder coated colours, plus clear and bronze anodised finishes. It is the market leader in sliding door closers.

OPERATING FORCE

It is important to understand that to open a sliding door that has a door closer fitted it is necessary to push against both the rolling resistance of the door and the force of the closer. Since the closing force of the closer must be greater than the resistance of the door, the force required to open a door fitted with a closer will be more than twice that for one without a closer. It is therefore important that the installer pays particular attention to freedom of door movement. Prior to a closer being fitted it should take only a light finger effort to open a security screen door up to 1500mm wide by 2400mm high.

A UNIQUE advantage of the Inventco closer, as opposed to a spring operated closer, is that the closing force of the latter increases the further a door is opened. Since its initial force must be sufficient to close a slightly opened door the force becomes unnecessarily large for a normal opening. The Inventco closer being weight operated exerts a constant force regardless of how far the door is opened.

It can be tempting to add an additional weight to overcome a sluggish door but this is not the correct response. It can make an unsatisfactory situation worse. Furthermore an additional weight reduces the available weight travel, and therefore door travel. Note that in any case a stop must be fitted to the track if necessary to prevent the weights impacting against the pulley box at the top of the tube.

ROLLERS AND TRACKS

Most problems encountered by installers are with the rollers and tracks. Inferior rollers can deteriorate with age and track rails can become roughened. Also, in dealing with queries, Inventco has found cases where the radius of the roller groove has been less than the radius at the top of the rail, resulting in a tendency for the rollers to ‘wedge’ onto the rail. The pulley groove radius must be greater than the rail radius.

The radius mismatch might not have been of concern before a closer was fitted to the door but the pull of the closer at the top of the door tends to cock the door and impose an additional load onto the leading roller, wedging it down further onto the rail. Although in the case of the Inventco closer, as compared with others, this is offset by the closer’s weight acting to oppose the cocking action and thereby lower the load on the leading roller, a greater load is imposed on the trailing roller. Good quality and properly sized rollers are essential for continued trouble free door closing.

EVAPORATION

Evaporation can obviously occur, however our tests and experience in the field show that evaporation levels are rarely significant even when the closer is in full sun. Over a twelve month seasonal cycle the closer can actually gain water. Tests in Queensland over a 12-month period on a west facing dark coloured door closer resulted in the closer gaining water.

There is only a small area in the pulley box through which evaporation can take place, nevertheless venting of heated and expanded moist air from the tube will result in some very minor water loss. This however, in all but the driest regions, will be compensated by overnight cooling and contraction of the air inside the tube, which causes fresh moist air to be drawn in. Even if there were to be a sustained gradual water loss the closer can tolerate up to two thirds loss before there is an unacceptable shortening of the closing time for a normal opening of 600 – 700mm.

Potential loss of water through dripping from the nylon line when the door is opened is eliminated by the foam plastic wiper pad fitted into the pulley box. Note: DO NOT EVER USE POOL WATER to fill or top up the tube. Pool water can be corrosive.

FREEZING

In areas where temperatures are likely to drop below freezing, the addition of enough automotive radiator anti-freeze solution to treat the volume of water in the door closer (800ml) should avoid icing problems.

POWDER COATING – POST FACTORY

Post factory powder coating of the door closer tube can be carried out provided all componentry is first removed including the rubber bung located near the bottom of the tube. The bung cannot be seen; it is in behind the black dress cap at the bottom of the tube. To remove the bung and dress cap, place a mat on the floor, and then invert the tube over a long length of wooden dowelling and slide the tube smartly downwards so that the bung impacts on the top of the dowel. The bung and cap will be forced from the tube.

To replace the bung, first check that there is no burring or damage to the bottom of the tube, then lubricate the bung with soapy water and, holding the end of the tube in both hands, press the bung 20mm into the tube with the thumbs. Ensure that the bung is aligned properly, not cocked towards one side. Inventco cannot take responsibility for any subsequent leaking of the door closer.

Can the Inventco Water Door Closer close a glass door?

  • The closer has been designed primarily for security screen doors although the closer can close many types of glass doors. However, because glass doors can vary so significantly in weight and size, Inventco cannot guarantee its effectiveness on ALL glass doors.

How do I install the Inventco Water Door Closer?

  • The installation of the Inventco Water Door Closer is simple. Typically it can be completed within 20 minutes. Note however, that although the closer is easy for a handyman to install, attention may also need to be paid to the condition of the door, particularly the rollers of older doors. Inventco recommends that experienced screen door installers fit the door closer. Click here for complete step by step installation instructions.

My Inventco Closer used to close my door...now it doesn't.

  • Malfunctioning of the closer is extremely rare. Any problems that develop are almost exclusively with the door or its tracks. Nevertheless to discover whether there is a problem with the closer, simply close the door then reach up and slowly pull down on the nylon line until the weights have reached the top of the closer. Now release the nylon line. The line will go slack and should be smoothly drawn back into the closer without any faltering by the steadily descending weights. If the movement is steady the closer is functioning correctly, in which case refer to the last paragraph for further action. If there is no movement or the movement falters there is a problem with the closer. Proceed as below.
  • Firstly, check for any damage to the closer tube. If none is obvious unhook the anchor lug and allow the weights to slowly descend to the bottom of the tube. Then remove the closer from the door and lean it against a bench or table so that the top of the closer is just above the bench.
  • Now withdraw the black pulley box a little way from the top of the closer and remove its back cover. Take up the slack in the nylon line and observe whether the it is passing over the pulley and not wedging beside it. If it is not passing over the pulley ease the pulley wheel out of the pulley box, reposition the line correctly over it and reinsert it. Now pull on the line and check whether the weights now descend smoothly. If they do not recheck for damage anywhere along the tube. If none is found withdraw the weights carefully out onto the bench using both hands in order to support each weight. If the weights are handled carelessly the connecting parts can be damaged. Examine the weights and the valve for any obvious damage. If none is obvious reinsert the weights and recheck for smooth travel. Finally if problems persist call the Help Desk on 1800 812 292 for further assistance
  • The most common reasons a door ceases to close satisfactorily are wear or damage to the door rollers or the track rails. Also common is dirt, etc packing into the door rollers. To check whether the door rolls easily and smoothly, unhook the anchor lug off the anchor screw and let the weights slowly descend to the bottom of the closer tube. Then open the door. It should move with just light finger pressure. If it does not inspect the rollers for clogging or damage and clean or replace as necessary. Also check for physical damage to the door or the track rails, or whether the door is warped. If the problem cannot be found and remedied and the closer has been checked as above call the Help Desk on 1800 812 292.

How long does the Water Door Closer take to shut a security door?

  • Typically a 1200mm wide sliding security screen door will be closed in 4-7 seconds from the fully open position. Two factors interact to determine the closing speed. These are the rolling resistance of the door and the fluidic resistance of the valve fitted to the lower of the two interconnected weights. One or the other will often be quite dominant.
  • Whereas the rolling resistance of the door is essentially constant regardless of speed, the resistance provided by the valve attached to the weights is speed dependent. Therefore the higher the rolling resistance of the door and the more it acts to slow the door, and the speed of the valve, the lower the fluidic resistance of the valve, which can become negligible.
  • By providing a lower resistance to movement if the rolling resistance is high and a higher resistance if it is low the Inventco water door closer is self-compensating. Nevertheless there will be occasions where a door will still close more quickly or more slowly than desired. A medium speed sleeve is fitted at the factory, however its effect will vary dependent upon manufacturing tolerances for the valve and tube. Provided, in the case of the door closing too slowly, the rolling resistance of the door is not too dominant the closing speed can be adjusted by exchanging the speed limiting sleeve fitted to the valve with a faster or slower sleeve.
  • If changing the sleeve is insufficient one of the two weights may be removed or a third weight added. Alternatively, in the case of the latter a pair of heavier (lead) weights having the same dimensions as the standard steel weights may be purchased. These are intended for heavier, i.e. glass doors, and will not be needed on screen doors up 2400mm by 1500mm in size that are in good condition.

Does the Inventco Water Door Closer conform to Australian Swimming Pool safety laws?

  • In Australia, door closers as such are not specifically covered by any government regulations but self-closing doors, i.e. those fitted with an automatic closer, that open onto a pool area are permitted by some councils. If considering the fitment of an Inventco closer to a door that opens onto a pool area it is essential to contact your local council first to find out if and under what circumstances a self-closing door is permitted.
  • In any case a pool gate backed up by a self-closing door provides an important extra safety measure for at-risk children by keeping them within the house while allowing older children occasional access. Older children sometimes prop open pool gates for easy movement into and out of the pool area as they play. They also move patio furniture about. View the pool safety video on the website.

What colour is the Water Door Closer available in?

  • The Inventco Water Door Closer is available in all the popular Dulux powder-coated colours, plus clear and bronze anodised finishes. For other colours the customer must arrange for a local firm to repaint a closer tube. Best results are obtained when repainting an anodised tube.
  • Because of the heat involved in the powder coating process all componentry must first be removed from the tube. Do this such that the weights can be slid out onto a bench or the floor. Care should be taken that the interconnecting parts of the two weights are not damaged. A hand should be placed under each weight as it emerges.
  • The black dress cap at the bottom of the tube AND the rubber bung just inside the bottom of the tube must not be overlooked. To remove the latter first ensure that there is no damage to or burring of the bottom of the tube and then insert a long dowel into the tube. Invert the tube and dowel over a mat or rubber sheet and then lift the tube and smartly pull it down onto the dowel. The bung should pop out of the tube. To later reinsert the bung wet it in soapy water and, holding the tube, press it back into the tube with the thumbs.

How much water should does the closer require.

Fill the closer to within a few centimeters of the top. The closer will still operate perfectly well even when only half filled although the door may initially move more rapidly. If the overall closing time is too quick add water.

Does the water in the Inventco Water Door Closer evaporate?

  • Evaporation can occur, however our tests and experience in the field show that evaporation levels are rarely significant even when the closer is in full sun. There is only a small area in the pulley box through which evaporation can take place, however venting of heated and expanded moist air from the tube will result in some very minor water loss. This however, in all but the driest regions, will be compensated by overnight cooling and contraction of the air inside the tube which causes fresh moist air to be drawn in.
  • Potential loss of water through dripping from the nylon when the door is opened is eliminated by the foam plastic wiper pad fitted into the pulley box. Note: DO NOT EVER USE POOL WATER to fill the tube. Pool water can be corrosive.

What are the dimensions of the Inventco Water Door Closer?

Including the pulley box and the bottom dress cap the closer body is a 1985mm long by 25mm square aluminium tube with an integral 10mm mounting flange.

Can the water freeze in the tube?

In areas where air temperatures are likely to drop below freezing automotive radiator anti-freeze chemical should be added to the water. Although no formal testing has taken place there have been no reported cases of occasional early morning frosts causing a problem. Be guided by local experience with hose water, etc.

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