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Server room door - Where to buy?

dsmjeff asked
We are moving into a different building and moving our single 42U server rack. I have been looking online for a good steel door that I can put our access control locks on. However, I'm not seeing anything clear cut online. Looking for recommendations on what to buy and where to buy it.

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If you don't have a general contractor or facility maintenance manager, you can look at places like Grainger, McMaster-Carr, AMS (Acoustical Material Supply).

Are you installing into an existing frame?  Or installing new?  If you don't have experience installing (or even ordering) doors, you may end up with something that doesn't fit.

There are a dozen measurements you need to spec a replacement door because the hinge and latch points aren't in "standard" locations.  You also need to figure on a door closer, latch set, etc.  In many areas you cannot install just a lock on a door.  You need to have a latch.

You must also look at your code requirements...fire rating for door & frame assembly.

Here's a start for the doors:

Dear dsmjeff,

Do you really need a steel door?
Are the walls "steel" or easy to drill through?
What about entry from the floor or the ceiling?
Do you along with the steel door also consider other physical security measures such as fireprotection, floodprotection, powerprotection...?
Is "a steel door" your biggest concern or have you evaluated other risks?

Kind regards,


Hi. We are in the process of going through all of the other room features as well. This is being down in phases to help w/ costs, but the 3 of the walls are concrete. The ceiling is open so we also need to look at a solution to close that up. The floor is concrete. The fourth wall is drywall, which we will have to replace. The door is right now our starting point.

Do you have suggestions for doors?



The installation is new. The current door / frame are going to be replaced and cut down and reinforced w/ what we need.
Don't need to replace the drywall walls.  As long as you have the stud locations marked you can reinforce the walls.  Amico makes a steel mesh that can be attached to steel or wood studs.  You need power tools to get through it, same as the block walls.  So the level of protection is similar...deterrent giving enough time to detect and alert.

Much lighter weight, and means you don't have to displace the power/pipes, etc. in the existing wall.  Those are all big deals if you're in a highrise or on somebody else's concrete slab.

Same type of mesh can be run from top of walls to the deck/ceiling.  Then put motion sensors for intrusion detection.  Nobody's hauling gear out of the ceiling...so treat this as an ingress point.

If you need stronger armor, I have a source for that too.  Also able to attach to studs, more tool-resistant, but still light enough for high-rise (or even airplane) installation.
>Do you have suggestions for doors?

I'm in drywall with commercial wood door and fairly standard institutional latchsets.  

I guess concrete walls and a steel door might feel like more protection.  But depends on if you really need a bunker, or if you're just trying to establish access control and auditing.

Cameras, motion detection, occupant sensors etc. do the security job.  Those came first in the thought process.  Locks and doors keep out the amateurs.  If someone really wants to get in, there is always a way.

That's why safes and vaults have a minute rating on them.  TL15, TL30, TRTL60, etc.

What kind of protection are you looking for?


Thanks for that info.

Mainly we are just needing a way to control access and do our best to protect the physical security of the equipment.

I'll look into the Amico.

"expanded metal mesh" is the generic trade term, IIRC.  There are versions made of steel and aluminum.  They hide nicely...after drywall or plaster/stucco covering, you'd never know they are there.

Steel doors are hard to blend in if the rest of the building had nice stained wood veneers.  Think of it this way...if an intruder had a drill and reciprocating saw to cut out a commercial wood door, then he would use the same tools for a steel-skinned door.

Nobody makes solid steel doors.   So, all you have to cut through is some 18-16ga. sheet metal and a fancy sheet of styrofoam.  They are more durable to shoulders and mule kicks, because they will dent and deform.

I had a few security doors built where the weak point is the lock/latch and the door frame.  But, they're incredibly heavy, and require full-height hinges.  Not necessary (IMO) for a server room.


I called a company in town called Doors Inc. I priced a solid steel commercial grade door. They say it is solid steel and not a 'skinned' door like you would get at Home Depot. Cost was 330 w/ out vents in the door.

Another thought - Vents in the door.... Thoughts?
>Vents in the door.... Thoughts?
That's a question for your HVAC contractor.  That would alter the air handling in the room.

>They say it is solid steel and not a 'skinned' door
Outright lie.  Come on over and try to lift one of my plates of cold-rolled steel.  They're only 1/2 - 3/4" thick, not 1-3/4 like a standard door.

If they're selling you a solid steel door, be prepared for some major equipment to move it.  There are special dollies you can use to carry large steel plates.  But, you'll need to work with your elevator contractor and have a technician on call, which runs around $400-800.  This will let you overload the elevator past it's rated capacity.

....that is, unless the nice folks at Doors Inc. are exagerrating a bit.  Perhaps their skins are thicker, maybe 18ga or up to 16ga.  Not the 20ga you'd find at Home Depot.

But "solid steel"....that's just a lie.


LOL :)

1/2" plate steel is ~20#/sq.ft. or more.  So, 3'x7' door would weigh 450#, and still be very wobbly.
20ga sheet is ~1.5#/sq.ft.
16ga sheet is ~2.5#/sq.ft.
Much lighter if they use the sheet metal.

But...the plate steel has application in a bunker with concrete walls.  :)