Archive for July, 2014

Jul 9 2014

NYC Apartment Entrances Door Security – What You Need To Know!

I recently attended a meeting of our Small Property Owners Association (SPONY) in a posh area of Manhattan. As I left the subway, walking to the meeting, I could not help noticing the beefed up security in most buildings with new CCTV surveillance cameras, video intercoms, keyless access control, door men and even security guards.  What was missing?  The doors and locks themselves being protected against forced entry.   Unfortunately, most property managers, owners and co-op/condo boards forget about door security. The apartment building entrances in NYC have a lifespan that  range from being brand new to well over 100 years old. Most of the apartment door entrances we see are over 30 years old and can be easily forced open. And while new glass door entrances look great unless they are fully secured they can be forced open.

Door security has undergone major changes in recent years with new technology.

Magnetic Locks:

High tech electromagnetic locks or magnetic locks use electromagnetism to control the entire locking mechanism. These locks rely on electric power like your washing machine or HDTV or refrigerator. Magnetic locks can pick up a number of different coding mechanism including smart card, proximity readers and keypads. Single door magnetic locks are offered in 600 lbs. or 1,200 lbs. dynamic holding force.  The strength of today’s magnetic locks is much greater than conventional locks. We recommend 1,200 lbs. magnetic locks for NYC apartment buildings entrances. 

NYC Codes and HPD Enforcement:

New York City has one of the toughest door lock codes in the nation which has kept lock manufacturers from producing magnetic locks that are NYC Code compliant.  New York City Codes are enforced by The Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD). In New York City an apartment building entrance lock must have the following:

1. Positive latching and a locked exterior. One motion, turning the door handle, opens the magnet on the latch. The door can remain locked on the outside even during a power failure, which would cause the electromagnetic lock to open.

2. No Special Knowledge exiting. Anyone can walk up to door and depress a lever or panic bar to exit.

3. Intercom interface in the building. The intercom interface to meet the apartment release requirements.

In New York City you must have on door entrances a heavy duty latch, single motion exiting and intercom release.


Securitech® Maglatch System: NYC Code Compliant Building Entrance Locks.

Currently, Securitech® Inc., a local manufacturer from Maspeth, New York, is the only manufacturer that is New York City Code compliant. We were so impressed with their product line for increasing door security that we had all our technicians trained at the Securitech factory in installing and servicing their electric locking systems.

Securitech® Maglatch System is NYC HPD code compliant durable and also vandal resistant.  The Maglatch lever handle has a built-in magnetic lock cut-off switch. One motion releases the electromagnetic lock and retracts the mortise latch lock. The locks are durable. The electric release solenoid is protected within the exterior trim. The locks are also vandal resistant. The slipclutch lever handle breaks-away if forced, but will not open the door and the lock is not damaged.

Homeland Surveillance is a certified dealer of Securitech® NYC Electric Locking Systems.