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Why Do Some Doors Have Two Peepholes?

A peephole is in the center of a door.
Shea Simmons / LifeSavvy

Most of us have seen doors with peepholes near the top. They’re especially common in apartment buildings, but some homes have them as well, allowing you to see who is standing in front of your home after a knock on the door.

But, you might have also seen doors in public places with two peepholes—one near the top, and one closer to the middle. These peepholes are designed for people with disabilities—specifically those in wheelchairs.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires businesses to be accessible in a variety of ways. That includes having a clear width, lightweight hardware, and enough maneuvering space for someone in a wheelchair to get around. The closing speed of the door also needs to be taken into consideration so it doesn’t slam quickly behind someone.

Earl Diamond Solid Brass 220-Degree Large Door Viewer Security Peek Peephole

If you know someone who is in a wheelchair, consider installing a custom peephole for the front door.

While peepholes aren’t legally required to be compliant, they do make public doors more accessible for everyone.

By placing two peepholes on a door—one at a traditional height and one at about 43 inches above the ground, businesses immediately give people with different mobilities or other disabilities the opportunity to feel just as safe and informed when someone is knocking on their door.

Millions of Americans deal with disabilities, and even though we’re making strides to make public life more accessible, there’s still a long way to go. To the average person, something as small as a lowered peephole might not seem like a big deal.

But, to someone in a wheelchair, it’s a small update that can make a big difference in how independent and safe they feel.

Stacey Koziel Stacey Koziel
Stacey Koziel is a news writer at LifeSavvy. She's worked as a freelance writer for over ten years, focusing on family and lifestyle content. She also has a background in marketing and social media, and is always eager to talk (and write!) about the latest TikTok trends. Read Full Bio »
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