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A156.9 - 2020 Cabinet Hardware

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American National Standard for Cabinet Hardware

ANSI/BHMA A156.8-2020 contains requirements for cabinet hardware and includes hinges, knobs, pulls, catches, shelf rests, standards and brackets, drawer slides, rotating shelves and track with guides for sliding panels. Included are performance tests covering operational, cyclical, strength, and finish criteria. For further information, consult the full standard, ANSI/BHMA A156.9 for Cabinet Hardware.

BHMA has created this series of Hardware Highlights to provide useful, accessible information about builders hardware for anyone with an interest in devices that hang, control, secure, and trim the doors. BHMA is the trade association which represents almost all of the North American manufacturers of builders hardware. One of its main activities since 1983 has been the development and maintenance of ANSI-approved standards for 35 separate product categories.

Product Performance: Purchasers of cabinet hardware certified to A156.9 ( can be assured products will perform to their expectations.

Below are an explanation and some examples of the evaluations conducted for certification:


This standard contains requirements for nearly one hundred types of cabinet hardware, including: hinges, knobs, pulls, catches, shelf rests, standards and brackets, rotating shelves, and track with guides for sliding panels.


Building products are expected to last a long time, and builders hardware is no exception. Cycle tests are indicated depending on the type of cabinet hardware. To assure the design is capable of repeated operation without degradation. For example, 100,000 cycles are required for a Grade 1 hinge.


The standard applies a variety of strength tests such as static loads, torques, and impacts depending on the function and type of cabinet hardware. For example, pulls shall support a 75 lbf test load without chipping, or disassembly, or breakage of the part or screws.


An additional duty of builders hardware is to be aesthetically attractive and stay that way. Resistance to corrosion by salt spray testing is verified, providing confidence in the long-term appearance of the architectural metals and coatings.


Cabinet hardware contributes to building sustainability through its verified durability, as well as material characteristics such as recycled content and recyclability. The reliable closing and sealing of openings can also contribute to energy conservation. BHMA has developed Product Category Rules, which will further define sustainability requirements and guide life cycle assessments and environmental performance declarations.

Function and Identifying Numbers: Another significant contribution of standards for product specification is a numbering system for lock function. Please consult A156.9 for the full list; an example is provided here:

Semi-concealed Hinges​: For flush doors. Loose or fast pin. Loose pin is reversible.


Bottom Edge Mounted Drawer Slides: Mounts on both sides of cabinet under drawer.

B05011 B05012 B05013

This document is not a substitute for the full standard. Refer to the entire standard for full information.

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Participate in the BHMA® Certification Program by voluntarily submitting a hardware product to independent laboratory testing to confirm that it fully meets the criteria of the appropriate ANSI/BHMA® standard.  This industry-wide certification program does not call for a manufacturer to be a BHMA® member in order to certify its products.

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