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ADA Compliance Info

View our guide to ADA Sign Installation

Frequently Asked Questions about ADA Compliant Signs

What is the purpose of ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) signs?

Do all signs need to be ADA compliant and have Braille and tactile letters?

Can I identify a room with just a number or does it need to have the room name?

I have some existing ADA signs. Do I need to update the signs I already have?

Do I need ADA compliant signs in the stairwells of my building?

What rooms are legally required to have ADA signs?

Who enforces ADA laws?

What are the requirements for ADA signs?

What does Grade 2 Braille mean?

I’d like to make a sign in a custom shape or a color that I don’t see listed. Is that possible?

What do I need to know about mounting ADA signs?


Frequently Asked Questions about ADA Central's Products

Do you keep all your products in stock for immediate purchase?

Can I add a logo to my signs?

How many lines of text or characters can I include on my sign?

How are your signs made?

How does your pricing work?

What signs are suitable for outdoor use?

How quickly can you make my signs?


What is the purpose of ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) signs?

ADA signs are required to make buildings accessible to people with visual disabilities. It’s important to remember that that this includes more than just blind people. Approximately 2.5 million Americans are legally blind (this is defined by visual acuity less than 20/200). There are also millions more who suffer from limited vision caused by glaucoma or macular degeneration. Besides Braille and tactile lettering, these signs provide bold, high contrast identification of rooms. As a generation of Baby Boomers age, these signs will become even more important. The intent of the law is to make sure people with disabilities have access to buildings by providing signs with high contrast, tactile letters and Braille for optimal readability. Visit www.ADA.gov for more information.

 

Do all signs need to be ADA compliant and have Braille and tactile letters?

No, there are a number of signs that are not required to be ADA compliant. Building addresses, directories, parking signs and temporary signs don't need to be ADA compliant. Temporary signs are designated as those which are in use for 7 days or less.

 

Can I identify a room with just a number or does it need to have the room name?

Rooms that are not likely to change function (like a restroom, kitchen, elevators, etc) should be identified by name. Other rooms that may change function can be identified by a numbers or letters. A common solution for rooms like these is to identify the room number on the sign and use a changeable paper insert to identify the room function. Our window signs serve this purpose.

 

I have some ADA signs but I know that the rules were recently updated and made effective in 2012. Do I need to update the signs I already have?

You are not required to make any changes if your signs comply with the previous standard (1991). However, if you alter your facilities you will be required to update to the most current standard. In many cases, signs won't need to be changed. If you have specific questions about your signs, we would be happy to answer them.

 

Do I need ADA compliant signs in the stairwells of my building?

You are required to have a tactile sign next to each door inside a stairwell. These signs should identify the floor level, stair level and exit level. Some local fire codes have size requirements for these signs. You should check with your local authorities before ordering.

 

What rooms are legally required to have ADA signs?

The short answer is: permanent rooms and spaces. Section 216.2 of the ADA applies to signs that provide designations, labels, or names for interior rooms or spaces where the sign is not likely to change over time. Examples include interior signs labeling restrooms, room and floor numbers or letters, and room names. Tactile text descriptors are required for pictograms that are provided to label or identify a permanent room or space. (You can review the entire ADA regulations here).

The key thing to remember is that if it's a room that is not likely to change, you are required to have an ADA compliant sign identifying it. Most rooms fall under this designation. Restrooms, vending areas, closets, etc. tend not to change function often and are required to have ADA signs. An example of a room that might change functions often is a classroom (this year it’s an Art room but next year, it may be a Science lab.) Remember, even if an ADA sign is not required, it's still a good idea. Making our buildings accessible to everybody is the right thing to do. The cost to identify a room with an ADA sign versus a non-ADA sign is a few dollars more.

 

Who enforces ADA laws?

The Department of Justice has the ultimate responsibility for enforcing ADA regulations. In practice, though, the actual enforcement is handled by local code inspectors. Citations from the Department of Justice can go as high as $50,000 for the first offence- although this is rare.

 

What are the requirements for ADA signs?

The ADA has a lot of regulations, especially regarding signs. In a nutshell, you will need ADA-compliant signs marking every room that is a permanent space. That means rooms that are not likely to change function need to be identified with an ADA compliant sign. Of course, there are many rooms that will never change function (restrooms, exits, etc.) A good rule of thumb is that if you have a question about whether or not a room should be identified with an ADA sign, err on the side of compliance and use an ADA sign. You should refer to the ADA Guidelines from the Department of Justice. Section 7 covers signs.

 

What does Grade 2 Braille mean?

Grade 2 Braille is a shorthand Braille and it is required by the ADA. Our Braille dots are rounded, not flat.

 

I’d like to make a sign in a custom shape or a color that I don’t see listed. Is that possible?

Of course. Just let us know what you’re looking for and we’ll be happy to help.

 

What do I need to know about installing ADA signs?

The quick advice we give is to mount your signs 54" from the floor to the center of your sign on the latch side of the door. There are some complex rules about installing ADA. To help clarify the issue, we've developed an ADA sign installation document (PDF) which you can download.


Frequently Asked Questions about ADA Central's Products

Do you keep all your products in stock for immediate purchase?

Can I add a logo to my signs?

How many lines of text or characters can I include on my sign?

How are your signs made?

How does your pricing work?

What signs are suitable for outdoor use?

How quickly can you make my signs?

 

Do you keep all your products in stock for immediate purchase?

Sort of. We offer thousands of products in dozens of color choices. In order to keep our prices low and our deliveries fast, we stock the components to fabricate your signs quickly. Depending on how quickly you need your signs, we can fabricate them in as little as one business day.

 

Can I add a logo to my signs?

Absolutely. Our goal is to make high quality, fully compliant signs that look great and represent your business well. Contact us and we’ll make sure your logo, corporate colors or graphics are incorporated to your signs.

 

How many lines of text or characters can I include on my sign?

The short answer is as much as you want. Just remember that when it comes to signs, less is more. Also, there are some regulations related to font size. Here is a quote from the actual ADA regulations “Letters and numerals shall be raised 1/32 in, upper case, sans serif or simple serif type and shall be accompanied with Grade 2 Braille. Raised characters shall be at least 5/8 in (16 mm) high, but no higher than 2 in (50 mm). Pictograms shall be accompanied by the equivalent verbal description placed directly below the pictogram. The border dimension of the pictogram shall be 6 in (152 mm) minimum in height.” If you have any questions, just contact us and we’ll make sure your signs look great and comply with all regulations.

 

How are your signs made?

It varies between products, but in general terms we use laser engravers and rotary cutters to fabricate the parts of the sign. Our signs are assembled by hand and inspected before we ship them. Our production process uses the latest technology to save you money. We made a video explaining one of our most common production techniques. This video explains more about the sign fabrication process.

 

How does your pricing work?

We use the latest technology and keep our operations lean to pass the savings along to you! We try to keep our pricing as low and understandable as possible. We think straightforward pricing will make they purchasing process easier.

 

What signs are suitable for outdoor use?

Some of our plastic signs and most of our metal signs are suitable for outdoor use. Metal signs are better suited for long-term outdoor applications. If you have any questions about what type of sign to use, just ask.

As always, we're happy to help with ADA questions. Please feel free to contact us!

 

How Quickly can you make signs?

We make signs faster than anyone because we stock all of our sign substrate colors. We can make your signs in as little as one business day. You can specify how quickly you need your signs delivered in the product page. Signs ordered before 6:00 AM EST can be fabricated the same day. If you have questions about when your sign will be delivered, please feel free to contact us.

 

*** The information provided on this website is accurate to the best of our knowledge, however, it is not a replacement for legal advice. Additionally, please be aware that local building codes always override Federal codes. Check with your local authorities on any compliance questions. ***