Air Curtains

air curtains restaurantAn open door is not only easy to pass through, but it encourages patrons to visit your store. The downside to this is it’s not energy efficient and creates a poor working environment. 

Air curtains solves these issues by minimizing energy loss and creating a safe, comfortable environment for both staff and customers.

Air curtains, also known as air doors, create an invisible door that effectively separates ideal indoor and outdoor temperatures. They work by adding a streamlined, fast-moving air stream to prevent air penetrating through the open doorway.

By creating an air partition between two areas, it prevents outdoor air from entering and indoor air from escaping. This helps the HVAC system work more efficiently by protecting the air conditioned facilities. This in turn reduces overall energy costs.

The latest technology allows air doors to work systematically and maintain the optimum balance between velocity & volume. Having an optimized balance allows air doors to operate at a more comfortable sound level, which is perfect for commercial use.

Vestibules are no longer the most practical solution, either from an economical or architectural standpoint. It is recommended by the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), that 7 feet of space should separate interior and exterior doorways (study). Simply put, they offer enhanced improvement to conditioned air movement in buildings.

They solve the aforementioned issues by offering the same advantages of a vestibule, but eliminate construction costs and substantially improve energy efficiency. It should also be noticed that they offer the benefit of additional floor space that would otherwise be consumed by a vestibule.

Pests and insects not only make life for clients, customers and staff uncomfortable, but they also have the ability to contaminate products in many industries. Areas like loading docks at a warehouse don’t have the luxury of shutting doors due to constant need of transporting goods. Therefore they are a practical solution to solve this issue.

They’re also useful in ensuring that harmful fumes or harsh irritants don’t affect staff.

Table of Contents

Contact us now for a free quote

We’ll be happy to help explain which model and make is best for your application.  

Choosing the Best Air Curtain

When choosing the best air curtain for your application there are several important points to consider.

Industrial Air Curtains

Industrial air curtains provide a lot more benefits aside from making a permeable barrier for ease of access. By installing air curtains, you are creating an environment that reduces toxins, bacteria, pollutants, and helps reduce odors.

They are useful in ensuring that harmful fumes or harsh irritants don’t affect staff. Many industrial areas require the use of harsh chemicals or create a lot of dust. Using these units can keep these fumes and particles out of the area.

Air curtains also provide a unique benefit for businesses that utilize airlocks for separating departments. By installing a unit, a company can maintain positive pressure within cleanrooms, and reduce condensation in storage areas.

Some of the unique applications and how air doors have benefited:

Hospitals & Labs

Hospitals and labs are two places where sanitary conditions are an absolute necessity to have air doors..

Some of the more important considerations are controlling energy usage, monitoring air quality, and making sure patients’ food is prepared in a hygienic environment.

Warehouses, Distribution Centers & Loading Docks

Warehouse doors are particularly large. Which means a great amount of temperature controlled air is lost when bay doors are opened. These bay doors tend to be slow to open and close. This factor alone reduces productivity.

In distribution centers, specifically loading docks, it’s simply not possible to open & close the bay doors every time. Transporting goods using trolleys, forklifts and other transportation equipment need to move about unhindered and efficiently around the loading bay. Therefore, air doors allow for the the bay door to remain open.

Commercial Air Curtains

Commerical air curtains are very common to provide a safe, permeable barrier to keep pests out while giving customers a welcoming feeling of an open door. Which is very important for businesses that rely on heavy foot traffic.

An added element to these types of units is the noise level. Having a quiet air curtain is important for certain commercial applications.

Recessed or low-profile air curtains are complete the job while remining unobtrustive. They’re ideal for archetual applications that require a more refined finish.

Some of the unique applications and how air doors have benefited:

Restaurants & Drive-Thru Window

Air curtains for restaurants and drive-thru windows are a necessity on several fronts. By using air curtains, a restaurant can separate the dining area, back-of-the-house kitchen area, and drive-thru.

The dining area is a high traffic area. The door is continually opening, letting out conditioned air, while letting the outside air in. While the door is open, unwanted pest can enter the restaurant. This decreases the chances of customers having a positive experience.

A restaurant air door also has the added benefit of keeping the delicious smells from escaping the dining room.

Restaurant kitchens or food service areas need to apply strict fly and insect control, and an air door stops these pests from entering the facility. Keeping food pathogens and contaminates away from food is imperative as well.

If your restaurant has a drive-thru window then an air curtain is necessary. Not only to keep temperates separate, but the air curtain in a drive-thru window keeps the outside exhaust and pollutants from potentially coming inside and contaminating food, causing unpleasant odors, and generally making staff and customers uncomfortable.

Outdoor & Exterior Air Curtains

It’s no secret that people like sitting outdoors in restaurants. However, there is the issue with nearby traffic emissions, general pollution, and insects. With an outdoor air door you seal off the area when the windows and doors are opened. Exterior air curtains help seal off the air that keeps out unwanted pollutants.

This feature is not only beneficial to restaurants, but other food service areas, such as grocery stores. Having large doors open helps with the ventilation. Air doors keep a nice invisible partition to separate the two areas. This is all while remaining inviting to customers and allowing employees to move freely, which increases productivity.

Cold storage and walk-in freezers

An air curtain designed cold storage can control the vast difference between the internal and external temperatures. Improper calibration can cause frost buildup and unwated moisture.

Every application is unique, so a trained professional should be able to assess your needs. They need to examine such factors such as what is being stored, temperatures on both sides of the door, and even how often the door opens.

Grocery stores & Food Service

Grocery stores stand to benefit from them because of fly and insect control. Keeping pests out ensures that your produce stays fresh and inviting longer. If the grocery has a food service area or a meat storage freezer, they can easily separate those departments without a physical barrier.

In the food service industry, an air curtain can provide tremendous value over time. Not only by reducing energy costs, but keeping pests and pathogens away from food products in the grocery store, and even grocery distribution centers.

Retail stores

Most retail shops have their doors opened and closed throughout the day. These actions allow for air, dust, allergens, and pests to make their way in with the customers. Adding an air doors allows customers to enter the store, while keeping the unwanted extras out.

The application helps out in several ways. It gives customers the welcoming feeling of an open door. Reduces air pollution, pests, contaminates and allergens out. All while saving on net energy.


Our industrial and commercial air curtains come with a variety of features, providing you with exactly the capabilities and requirements to meet your commercial or industrial needs.

Some of our air curtain features include:

Sizes Available

We offer a wide variety of sizes for air curtains depending on your needs. The most common sizes for commercial air curtains are 36″, 42″, 48″, 72″ and 96 inches.

Industrial applications not only use different engineering standards than the commercial variations of the curtain, but the most obvious is the size. The most common sizes for industrial air curtains are 96″, 120″, 144″, and 168 inches.

Of course these are the most common sizes requested. We offer many other sizes with customizable features for each one depending on the application.

Contact us now for a free quote

We’ll be happy to help explain which model, make and size is best for your application.  

Berner Air Curtains

berner air curtainWe are proud official representatives of Berner Air Curtains, or Berner International. Corporation. Based out of New Castle, Pennsylvania, Berner has been globally distributing their products since 1956. They are widely considered the best air curtains in the industry.

Over the last few years R. Williamson & Associates has been recognized as Berner’s Reps of the Year. Berner offers air doors for a variety of applications such as:

We are proud official representatives of Berner Air Curtains, or Berner International Corporation. Over the last few years R. Williamson & Associates has been recognized as Berner’s Reps of the Year. Berner offer models for a variety of applications such as:

Frequently asked questions


Are air curtains effective?

Yes, air curtains are very effective. They create an invisible wall of air between two areas. This helps the HVAC system work less. Thus, reducing energy costs. They prevent bugs, flies, dust and other unwanted contaminants from entering. 

Do air curtains keep flies out?

Yes. Most flies and bugs cannot penetrate the air curtain’s air pressure.

Do air doors save energy?

Yes. By creating an air partition between two areas, it prevents outdoor air from entering and indoor air from escaping. This in turn saves energy and reduces overall costs.

What are air doors used for?

They are used for reducing energy costs and keeping unwanted containments out. Especially useful in areas where doors, as large as warehouse bay doors, remain open.

Serving the Greater Chicago, Illinois area

Once you have decided on the appropriate air curtains, R. Williamson & Associates can provide you air curtain price quote. We specialize in ones that fit a variety of business needs. We are also the official representative of Berner International covering Illinois, Wisconsin, & Indiana such as, but not limited to:

We can also send out a trained specialist to assess the area and make certain the proper unit is being used for your specific application. We run tests on-site to see how cost effective each model will be to assure maximum efficiency.

Contact us now for a free quote

We’ll be happy to help explain which model and make is best for your application.  

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