Troubleshooting Salice Soft-Close Hinges

An expert provides some insight into factors affecting the performance of soft-close hinges. March 12, 2015

Question (WOODWEB Member) :
We are using both a 155 and 94 degree thick door hinge for our current kitchen project. The closing mechanism is very slow, particularly on the 94 hinges. I made a call to my supplier looking for any adjustment and said I must drill to 16.5mm for adequate air space behind the hinge which I have done with not much improvement. By accident I put two soft close on the same door on a cab using the 155 hinge and that worked much better, but I know it is recommended one soft and one free swing for each door I believe. Is anyone familiar with Salice soft close, and if so what is your experience? The hinge doesn't even activate until the door is 3" from being fully closed.

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From Contributor Z:
May I suggest two hinges per door unless you have a very small, lightweight door, which is seldom the case for thick door applications.

From contributor K:
For some reason, warming them up on the back side of the cup with a heat gun seems to loosen them up. If the hole is not bored deep enough it puts pressure on the plastic cap which is the soft close mechanism. Also consider one soft close and one normal if all else fails.

From Contributor B:
Letís take this one topic at a time. First, the correct minimum drilling depth for both the 94 degree and the 155 degree thick door, Silentia hinges is 15.5mm. Drilling at 16.5mm will have no adverse effect. If however, the cup depth is even slightly shallower than the 15.5mm you absolutely will experience very slow closing doors or possibly doors that will not close at all (even 1/32" too shallow will adversely affect the hinge movement). If it is not possible to drill the full 15.5mm depth due to a door profile edge you can use spacers that will allow you to drill a shallower cup.

Secondly, the reason for this depth requirement is not to have an ďair spaceĒ but rather to prevent excessive pressure on the hinge cup bottom. Excessive pressure on the bottom of the hinge cup can restrict the movement of the mechanism contained within the white outer shell.

Third, cold temperatures can indeed affect the closing speed of the Silentia hinge. I would not recommend a heat gun however. Normal room temperature is all that is required for acceptable movement of the hinge. Occasionally, in the winter months, in a cold shop, I have indeed seen slower than acceptable movement. This will correct itself once the hinge reaches normal room temperatures. This really should not be an issue in the summer months.

Lastly, two soft close hinges on a door would normally be recommended. In some cases however, with lighter or very small doors it is acceptable to mix one soft close and one self-close hinge on the same door. This will indeed speed up the closing action.

I would agree that the 155 degree hinge does not activate until much closer to the cabinet than does the 94 degree hinge (or for that matter the 105 degree and 110 degree hinges). This is due to the fact that the 155 degree is a seven pivot hinge. The others are four pivot hinges and the soft close feature will activate once the door is about 40 degrees open.

Click here for higher quality, full size image

From the original questioner:
Thank you for the replies. Two hinges per door performs better. I was always under the assumption that two hinges was not recommended as the operation of one would interfere with the other.