Selecting new door parts and hardware for your business can be a bit confusing if you don't do it very often. You'll likely be asked about things such as handing, keying and functions. You may have to pick out a faceplate, hinge or strike plate. Knowing exactly what the door parts and hardware salesperson is talking about will help you make a faster and better decision, and eliminate any miscommunications that could result in the wrong type of hardware being delivered and installed on your doors.
A door hardware's function describes exactly how it opens and locks. For example, when you are asked, "What doorknob function would you like?" you are being asked to choose between a locking or nonlocking doorknob. Function can also be used to describe the action of deadbolts and door handles.
When choosing door hardware, you may be asked to determine the handing of your doors. Handing refers to whether you grasp the door's lever or handle with your left or right hand when you are opening the door to walk into a room. You can determine the handing by noting the location of the hinges. If they're on the left side, then you need left-handed door hardware. If they're on the right side, then you need right-handed door hardware.
When ordering multiple doorknobs with locks, you may be asked to determine the keying. This refers to how many different keys you would like to have cut. You can have all the doors keyed differently, with a different key for each lock. Or you can have all the doors keyed the same, with the one key that opens all the locks.
Loose-pin hinges, like any hinge, hold the door to the frame and allow it to open. But when you want to remove the door, a loose-pin hinge simply slips out, separating the two sides of the hinge.
Strike plates are pieces of metal, typically polished chrome or polished brass, that fit onto your door frame opposite the doorknob. They protect the door frame as the door opens and closes and the bolt rubs against the frame.
Faceplates are the pieces of metal that are mounted to the door edge and surround the bolt. Faceplates come in four types: square, radius, drive-in and universal.