Frequently Asked Questions
As you would expect from the best residential aluminum front doors in Europe, our doors are available with so many options that it’s difficult to list them all on our website. Feel free to ask us anything of course but we hope that we have answered the most obvious questions below.
Q. Are all of your products bespoke?
Yes. We do not offer standard sizes, as all of our products are manufactured to your exact requirements, designed specifically for your property. We now offer Swarovski.
Q. Can I upgrade my locking system to enhance security? A. Yes.
There are 3 levels of lock which all offer very high security.
Level 1 – BT3: 2 hooks, 1 deadbolt, 2 mushrooms, key wind, can have door safety catch
Level 2 – BT5: 4 hooks, 1 deadbolt, key wind, can have door safety catch
Level 3 – AGU: autolock, 2 hooks, 2 hi-security pins, 1 deadbolt, autolocks when ‘pushed to’
Q. How are double doors secured? A. With Schüco Shootbolts.
The slave door is supplied with a 20mm long double shoot-bolt at top and bottom. A minimum of 10mm of each bolt is engaged into the frame head and into the threshold. The
A minimum of 10mm of each bolt is engaged into the frame head and into the threshold. The
The shootbolt system is supplied by Schüco and the bolts are simultaneously operated via a discreet lever, which is located at around chest height in the rebate of the slave door.
Q. Are Spitfire S-500 Series doors SBD or Document Q compliant? A. Yes
The S-500 series has been tested and passed the stringent ‘Level 3’ testing at IFT Rosenheim in Germany, the leading European Test House. They have also been tested and passed the standard required for
They have also been tested and passed the standard required for new build, Document Q of Building Regulations by The British Standards Institute (BSI).
Q. Does the S-500 Series meet the latest revisions of Building Regulations? A. Yes.
All of our doors fully comply with the latest building regulations in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
Because our doors are manufactured on the Continent of Europe where building design and thermal regulations are more advanced we believe are doors are future proofed against advances in our local standards for many years to come.
Q. Do S-500 Series doors have Safety Glass as standard? A. Yes
We only supply doors with Safety Glass. Our glazing is almost always triple glazed with the following specification: Outer pane 6.4mm laminated, middle pane 6mm float, inner pane 6.4mm laminated.
Q. Can I have automatic unlocking? A. Yes
With our electromechanical locking system, incorporating fingerprint recognition or a key fob you can unlock the door, to an open-ajar position.
When you simply push the door closed the lock will automatically operate and the hooks and bolts throw, engaging deep into the keep.
Q. What about automatic opening? A. Yes
Our ‘Advanced’ AGU auto-system can be programmed to unlock and open the door to approximately 120 degrees.
The door will usually be programmed to stay open for 30 seconds and will then gently close and autolock.
If the fingerprint reader or keyfob is activated again whilst the door is automatically closing, the door will pause then fully re-open again for a further 30 seconds.
Q. Who makes the automatic opening gearing and is it reliable? A. Geze and Yes.
Geze are world leaders in door opening technology and their systems are regularly used on some of the most prestigious projects in the world.
Check them out on www.geze.com.
The drive gear for your door will be discreetly located in the head of sash.
Q. Can you fit sensors to protect children and pets on automatic doors? A. Yes
We can fit ankle height ‘magic eye’ sensors to stop an automatic door closing if there is an obstruction.
Q. Can I still open my door in the event of a loss of power? A. Yes
Our advanced automatic opening system has a 30 minute battery back-up.
And remember, you can always override all auto-systems with your key. Every S-500 door has a key as for back-up.
Q. Does auto-unlock work during a power cut? A. No
You have to use your key to operate the lock but every door is supplied with 5 keys.
Q. Are the doors over-rebated to protect against wind and rain? A. Yes
Both internal and external faces of the door leaf are rebated to provide maximum weatherproofing via the door seals.
Q. Is there a choice of outerframes? A. Yes
but we prefer to offer only one AT100 is our standard outerframe which is 90mm deep with a chamfered finish.
Q. Do Spitfire S-500 doors have thermally insulated profile options? A. Yes
Our standard ‘Exclusive’ range of S-500 doors has an insulated sash but not outerframe and this product has a low (very good) thermal value of 0.9 W/m2K.
Our S-500 ‘Exclusive Plus’ range is insulated in both frame and sash and has a stunningly low thermal value of 0.7 W/m2K which is better than Passiv Haus.
Q. How many people can get access via a single Fingerprint reader? A. 1000
Our readers can store 1000 fingerprints and it is easy to record new prints yourself by nominating a ‘master’ fingerprint.
All it takes is an impression from the ‘master’ then 3 impressions of the new finger to record a new person.
These systems are ideal if you wish to give access to your extended family or if secure and reliable access is required for a block of apartments.
Q. Can the reader be used to open another door? A. Yes
A reader in our Genius Comfort 1 range has a double relay and can be programmed to operate 2 doors from the same reader. So you could open your front door with one fingerprint and an adjacent garage door with another.
Q. How reliable are Spitfire Fingerprint Readers? A. Very
Spitfire units have been developed in conjunction with Siemens of Germany and we have sold thousands of units across Europe, which are still in daily use.
All units come with a full 2 year warranty and it is relatively easy and not expensive to replace old units when the time comes.
Ours is a capacitive fingerprint sensor which is very simple to operate because all you have to do is press your finger on the sensor.
This is much better than “pull or swipe” sensors where you have to be careful how quickly and from which direction you pull your finger over the sensor.
The Spitfire reader will identify moist, dirty, greasy and slightly injured fingers and will open the door in 1.2 seconds.
Q. How safe is Fingerprint Recognition? A. Very
We use secure technology developed in conjunction with Siemens of Germany.
Our reader does not save an impression, so there is nothing to hack. Spitfire systems are very safe and can even be configured to trigger a silent alarm.
Q. And if I don’t trust fingerprints? A. Use our codepad of a Spitfire Keyfob
Our codepad is very easy to use and is a modern unit incorporating advanced technology.
All buttons are capacitive and are only activated when they come into contact with your finger tip, like an iphone.
The advantage of our keypad compared to classical keypads is that they do not get worn out or show wear on certain numbers, even after longer periods of use; a common problem with conventional keypads.
Q. Can I control who has access to my home? A. Yes
We have the option of a computerised control system which allows you to decide who can enter and at which times, via their fingerprint. So for example; you can allow your cleaner to access between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday only.
Q. Can I open my door via Smart technology on my mobile phone? A. Yes
Simply connect your mobile device to our bluetooth technology and when you approach the door you can activate the auto-unlock using your phone keypad.
Our bluetooth system has an unique PIN code and up to 100 smart devices can be added.
Q. What are the size limitations on single doors? A. See table below
Minimum size: width 850mm and height 2000mm
Standard doors: maximum is 1260mm wide x 2250mm high
Large doors maximum 1100mm wide x 2251-2500mm high
XL doors maximum 1100mm wide x 2501-2700mm high
Q. Can my door open outwards? A. No.
Q. Are your products suitable for commercial use? Yes.
Many of our doors have been installed in commercial premises like apartment blocks and homes of multiple occupancy.
They are designed to withstand many years of constant use even in high pedestrian traffic zones.
Q. Are S-500 Series Doors easy to install?
For an experienced fitting team they are very easy because the profiles are so rigid.
However, it is a 2 person job and sometimes more people than that are required to help move the door into position because of the weight of the door.
We would recommend that only trained Spitfire Door Designer Partners carry out an installation.
Q. Do doors come fully assembled? Yes.
Doors are supplied with all parts fitted and all components glazed.
Sidelights and toplights have to be de-glazed for installation.
Q. How many wood effect finishes are there? A. 20
The range is very wide and we can usually match all wood types.
Q. Will my wood effect fade? Almost imperceptibly but yes over years.
We like to compare our paint and wood effect finishes to automotive finishes.
Just like your car, over many years there will be degradation in the finish due to exposure to ultra violet light, but as with your car you will probably never notice.
Q. Do you have a low threshold? A.Yes
All doors are supplied as standard with a 20mm high thermally broken aluminium low threshold.
Be aware that this threshold provides only 10mm of cover internally between the top of the threshold and the bottom of the door sash – please think about your finished floor level – carpets, tiles, parquet flooring etc. very carefully!
Q. Do you have threshold (base) packers? Yes
We have a 5mm anodised aluminium packer and a 30mm aluminium base packer which can either be supplied in an anodised finish to match the threshold, or can be powder coated the same colour as your door frame.
Q. Which elements are provided by market leader Schüco? A. Many
All aluminium profiles which are unique to S-500 Doors, all hinges, shootbolts and all thresholds.
Q. Are the hinges adjustable? A. Yes
Multi-adjustable in 3 planes and are probably the most adjustable entrance door hinges in the world.
They are very high quality and on XL doors we fit 4 hinges, 3 on all other doors. They can be supplied in satin, white or black.
Q. If I order built-in LED lights, how do they work? A. Very simple
Spitfire S-500 Doors will come pre-wired and you just need an electrical spur to wire into.
LED lights can also be fitted in handles and all LED’s come on at dusk and go off at dawn and only cost pennies to run per day.
Q. Can I have a letterbox on an S-500 Series Door? A. Yes and No
We will never put a letterbox within a door leaf because it would destroy the thermal value and could compromise security.
We offer a range of high quality German letterboxes that can be fitted in a side panel or on a wall or we can offer a Renz letterbox system in a sidepanel.
Q. How heavy are S-500 Series Doors? A. 100kg.
A door with 2 sidelights is circa 200kg. However, all Spitfire Doors are surprisingly light to operate when installed.
Q. How long does an installation take? A.
This will depend on the size and configuration of the door, the site access, property condition and whether the door is replacing an old door or is going into a new aperture.
But, as a general rule installations take a day. If your project is particularly large or complex our Design Partners will advise you
Q. What is the lead time for a door? A. 8 weeks.
From receipt of full payment your door will be delivered in 8 weeks, usually on Spitfire transport.
For very large units we do use specialist transport and we require customers to have a forklift to unload.
Q. At what stage do I need a site survey?
Ideally your aperture or opening will need to be formed and the finished floor level clearly marked.
This will allow your surveyor to know exactly what to measure too.
It is possible to carry out a survey without the opening being ready however the manufacturing sizes will need to be agreed and signed off by you before manufacture takes place.
Q. Is there a range of glazing options? Yes
As standard, our doors are triple glazed with laminated safety glass, inside and out. We can offer double glazed side lights but our standard specification is triple glazed, the same as the door itself.
Q. Are the doors difficult to maintain? No.
Our S-500 Series doors are virtually maintenance free. The only maintenance required is keep the threshold free of debris, keep the door clean using warm soapy water and every 6-12 months lubricate the lock.
Q. What extra maintenance is required in a Marine environment?
Doors situated close to the sea are under constant attack from sea-salt. It is vital that every week external surfaces and hardware are washed down with warm soapy water. If you damage stainless steel hardware it will corrode and your warranty will be invalid.
Q. What guarantees do you offer?
We offer a standard guarantee on all doors which warrants that our doors will be free of defects in aluminium material, design and workmanship for 10 years. All hardware and biometric systems are warrantied for a period of 2 years only
Q. Is the coating suitable for a marine environment?
Yes, our Aluminium Entrance Doors are powder coated to Qualicoat standards which is a commercial application guaranteed for 25 years.
In marine environments such as a home on the coast the salt in the air can corrode the powder coating.
To alleviate this we ‘marine grade’ the powder coating which is a slightly different grade of coating and we also treat all corners, joints, and mitres to prevents any corrosion and guarantees the finish even in the harshest coastal environment.
Q. Do you cover the whole of the UK? Yes.
Visit our Spitfire Showrooms – we service the whole of England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Ireland and the Channel Islands..