Sliding, roller or hinge doors: What’s the rule of thumb?

Over the past number of years, new agricultural buildings have been constructed on farms across the country. Farmers looking to invest in new buildings were helped massively by the introduction of the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme (TAMS II). It first opened in June 2015 and is set to run until December 2020.

The scheme aims to provide farmers with grant aid to improve and/or build a specific range of farm buildings or purchase equipment that may benefit their farm businesses.

However, farmers looking to apply for grant aid must construct sheds and other buildings to certain grant specifications.

Nowadays, agricultural buildings are large in size and require wide and high doors to facilitate machinery. If large doors are hinged, they can be extremely dangerous if caught by the wind.

Speaking to AgriLand, Aidan Kelly – an agricultural buildings advisor – from Agri Design and Planning Services (ADPS) outlined that there are certain specifications when it comes to installing doors on newly constructed agricultural buildings.

“Basically with the hinge door, there are grant specifications rules. The basic pedestrian doors that would be on a house are permitted. However, the department won’t allow anything bigger than that. Large doors that get caught in the wind are extremely dangerous.

“I’ve always said to clients, it’s either a sliding door or a roller door once you go into any bit of size. Small doors – on hinges – can be used to let calves in and out of sheds,” he explained.

According to the Department of Agriculture, under the TAMS scheme, all doors wider than 1.2m should be sliding. Doors to centre feed passages, where installed, should also be sliding.

The sliding track, the department says, must be perfectly straight when erected. The sliding door can also have a hinged, outward-opening, personnel door, with a minimum height of 2.2m.

Furthermore, it is recommended that a gate is used inside a sliding door in an animal pen. This prevents animals pushing up against the door. Steel roller doors are also permitted once they are manufactured from certain cladding material.