Acoustic Alert

What is the meaning of the term “acoustic assembly”?

The term “acoustic assembly” has specific meaning and indicates that the door leaf and door frame, as well as the perimeter and bottom seals and acoustic glazing are to be supplied exactly as they were tested in an independent laboratory. The current CSI standard specification i.e. Section # 08 34 74, demands the supply of an acoustic assembly when an acoustic opening in required.

What is the advantage of supplying an acoustic assembly?

As demand for acoustic security becomes widespread in commercial and institutional construction, the standardized acoustic performance of doors and frames as well as acoustic lights has become essential. These are known are measured via STC ratings in accordance with ASTM standards. Where STC ratings are called for, the smallest alteration to a tested acoustic assembly can have significant negative effects on the performance levels of acoustic door and frame assemblies. Consequently, it is essential that the entireacoustic assembly is supplied in complete conformance with the assembly that was laboratory tested. 

What do we mean by “the whole package”?

Some manufacturers provide acoustic seals but have not tested them with a certified acoustic door and frame! Other manufacturers promote their acoustic doors by indicating that they have tested their door panels as inoperable panels. At AMBICO, we provide only those assemblies that have been tested as a complete operable acoustic package in accordance with ASTM E 90. Doors are installed by factory-certified installation teams. This is the only way to ensure that acoustic door and frame assemblies will perform as well in the field as they do in the lab!

Some manufacturers promote their acoustic seals or their acoustic wood doors without providing “the whole package”. How can they meet the ASTM standards?

Acoustic doors will not perform at their advertised STC ratings unless they are supplied as part of an entire acoustic assembly. Acoustic seals cannot simply be added to third-party door panels or door frames and achieve high performance STC ratings. Neither can door panels be supplied in a door opening without tested perimeter seals and acoustic frames. Insist on “the whole package” when you specify or purchase acoustic door assemblies! You may wish to refer to our specification at for some guidance too.

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What factors set AMBICO STC product apart from others?

AMBICO offers the most complete range of STC door and window products in the industry. Products are offered only as complete assemblies-just as they were tested in the laboratory. When door leafs are specified with glazing, only AMBICO offers the doors with factory installed glazing. Both wood and steel door assemblies are fire tested in accordance with UL10c. That sets us apart from our competition! AMBICO acoustic door and frame assemblies have been developed to comply with handicap codes-specifically ASTM A117.1. Our acoustic assemblies have been tested with an industry-leading range of hardware preparations including concealed closers, concealed vertical rod exit devices and flat thresholds. Both steel and wood door products are in stock and are ready for immediate shipment-the only stocking program of this breadth in the industry. Combined with products that range from STC 33 to STC 64 there really is no other apple in the bunch!

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How can a wood door achieve acoustic ratings as high as STC 51?

Our secret is in the metal core that forms the substrate of the door leaf. No other wood door on the market creates an acoustic barrier of up to STC 51because no other wood door has so little wood in it! Consequently, the hollow construction of our wood clad, steel core door traps sound and performs at the STC levels of our best steel doors. As a result, the building owner obtains the pleasing, wood door aesthetic that is desirable in the marketplace combined with the rugged performance of a steel door. Who says that you can’t have it both ways?

Can a wood door really attain LEED sustainable design criteria?

AMBICO manufactures wood door panels where less than 10% of the product is obtained from the forest. We then laminate FSC-CoC wood veneers as well as solid wood stiles and rails to match these veneers on each and every wood acoustic door. Combined with our unique acoustic steel core, our wood door product provides a recycle content of over 50% – the greenest acoustic door and frame assembly in the industry!

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Why are AMBICO acoustic assemblies compliant with handicap code ASTM A117.1?

We have engineered the lightest acoustic door panel in the industry. Our 1 34” (44mm) doors weigh as little as 7 pounds per square foot and range up to 10 pounds per square foot. Our standard door bottom is custom designed to seal the assembly effectively across the entire bottom rail of the door panel. AMBICO does not rely on conventional drop seals. Neither does our system require a cam lift hinge in order to seat the door panel on a threshold. We’ve used our system for over twenty years and it is proven in the field. That’s why we warrant our entire assembly for five years!

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Why does AMBICO offer a warranty for five years when most buildings are warranted for only one or two years by the builder?

It’s true that AMBICO not only exceeds building standards but all of its competitors by offering a five year warranty. We are so certain that the entire door and frame assembly will perform as advertized that we’re prepared to stand behind it with an industry leading five year warranty. That’s a result not only of effective quality control at the factory but a reflection of the values that AMBICO has championed since its inception in 1955.

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