It’s gratifying to offer contractors a better way to build. Maybe a product makes a task easier to perform. Faster to install. Safer to use. Or safeguards profit margins more generously.

Sometimes it can do all that and more. That’s certainly true when a product category has a serious callback reputation.

Consider the entry door sill, for example. The material science for a water-rated door sill system is well understood by most manufacturers. Most standard door sills stay dry and aren’t a callback concern.

Then there’s the ADA-compliant door sill system.

Coming Up Short

It’s no secret door building product manufacturers haven’t cracked the code on a water-rated sill system that complies with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards. Even a respected industry name like Endura admits their ADA door sills came up short for years.

“Our ADA-compliant door sill systems suffered from the same water and air performance problems as any other manufacturer,” confesses Adam Kendall, Endura’s product engineering manager. That harsh assessment helped fuel Kendall and his team’s drive to reverse the situation.

Meeting the Challenge

They knew the problems with a low-rise sill could not be solved with a single engineering masterstroke. Difficult near-flat sill geometry requires new thinking that solves for water infiltration across assorted applications, including outswing and inswing conditions. And it has to be done in a way that minimizes SKUs for building product dealers and distributors.

The Endura team identified three major vulnerabilities:

  • Between the base of the jamb and edge of the sill
  • Upwards pressure at the weatherstrip
  • Sill underside

Innovative Problem Solving

Solving one doesn’t help. Only a comprehensive systemic approach employing modular plug-and-play components could address multiple hydraulic issues. Kendall says “We asked builders, contractors, and pre-hanging shops about the problems they were having with ADA-compliant sill units. That insight guided our engineering and manufacturing ideas.”

The development work yielded several innovations, including:

  • Full-length caulking strip on the sill underside, creating a seamless water barrier
  • A sealing beak fitted beneath the weatherstrip to block upward hydraulic pressure
  • Jamb boot and sealing gasket to block moisture movement between sill and jamb
  • Switchable sill cap to conform to the flooring application – laminate, tile, or vinyl
  • Inswing and outswing applications as well as sill extenders
  • Specialty bulb cap options are also available (not ADA-compliant)

“Several customers that were happy to test prototypes,” recalls the veteran engineer. “We put our design ideas through its paces to ensure not only full ADA-compliance but also a water-rated solution contractors could count on. It’s time to end callbacks.”

Certified Up to DP-35

The patent-pending product is called the ADAptive Sill System, available now from Endura. “It’s DP certified up to 35, which is unheard of,” Kendall explains. Contrast that with ADA-compliant sill systems euphemistically labeled as ‘limited water.’

“The idea you can finally comply with ADA standards without water issues should be welcome news for dealers and distributors.”

Learn more about how an ADAptive Sill System offers your pro customers full ADA compliance without water-related callback worries.