Custom ADA Signs: Create an Accessible Environment with Custom ADA Signage

Creating an accessible environment for customers with disabilities is critical for businesses today. Based on recent statistics, about 1 in 4 adults in the U.S. have some type of disability. This equates to 61 million adults who require accessible facilities when patronizing businesses. Additionally, studies show that the aging population and increased life expectancy will continue expanding this demographic and need for accessibility in the future.

To help businesses provide equal access for disabled individuals, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed in 1990. This civil rights law prohibits discrimination based on disability and requires public establishments to meet certain accessibility standards. Under the ADA, businesses are legally obligated to provide “reasonable accommodations” to ensure their facilities are accessible to disabled patrons.

One key area the ADA regulates is the accessibility of signage. Providing ADA-compliant signage is crucial for helping disabled customers easily navigate, use services, and understand rules or warnings in public facilities. As a Kansas City business owner, taking steps to evaluate your establishment’s accessibility and install proper ADA signage demonstrates a commitment to serving all members of your community.

ADA Regulations for Business Signage

The ADA has specific regulations around signage to ensure accessibility for all. This includes requirements around text contrast, font size, raised characters and braille, and placement. According to the ADA’s Accessibility Guidelines, signs must have:

  • 70% contrast between the background and lettering, so the text is easily readable
  • Thick, sans serif font styles that are straightforward and easy to read from a distance
  • Braille and raised characters for tactile reading by vision impaired individuals
  • Signs posted 60 inches off the ground for optimal visibility

Braille requirements vary based on the type of sign. For example, according to the ADA Accessibility Guidelines, signs designating permanent rooms need tactile text and braille, while exit signs require only tactile lettering. Proper mounting heights, well-contrasted fonts and including braille are key for ADA compliance.

How Custom Signs Help Meet Compliance

To comply with ADA regulations, signage must be properly designed and installed. Custom signs allow businesses to ensure their signs meet all necessary requirements from the start.

Some key elements of compliant ADA signage include:

  • Using high contrast colors like white text on a black background for easy readability 
  • Including braille translation beneath the text for accessibility
  • Using large, easy to read font sizes (typically 70-80% of the sign height)
  • Placing signs at a compliant height for visibility (typically 60 inches above the floor)

Custom ADA signs allow for all necessary elements like color, text, braille translation, and size to be specially designed to meet ADA requirements from the start.

Custom ADA Sign Options

When creating custom ADA signs for your business, there are many options to consider in terms of size, shape, colors, materials, and braille to ensure compliance and align with your brand aesthetic.

Size and shapes can range from standard rectangles to custom cut-outs or dimensional letters. Minimum character height and width requirements must be met based on sign viewing distance, generally at least 5/8 inches for upper case and 5/16 for lower case (see ADA Signage Guidelines).

For colors, choose those that contrast well so the sign is easily readable. Generally light characters on a dark background or dark characters on a light background provide the best contrast (see ADA Color Contrast Guidelines).

Common materials for ADA signs include acrylic, aluminum, or brushed stainless steel. Acrylic is lightweight, durable and economical while metals like aluminum and stainless steel create a modern, high-end look.

Braille requirements vary based on sign type, but in general permanent room and space signs must include Grade 2 braille along with raised letters and numbers. There are many options for braille translation and integration into the ADA sign design.

By leveraging these options – sizes, shapes, colors, materials and braille – businesses can create custom ADA signs aligned with their brand image and accessibility needs.

Benefits of Customized Branding

One of the key benefits of custom ADA signage is the ability to match your business’s branding and style. Rather than using generic or off-the-shelf signs, custom signs allow you to incorporate your logo, brand colors, and specific design elements to create signs that align with your overall aesthetic.

Consistent branding is important for businesses as it helps customers instantly recognize your company and connect the signage to your brand. Matching ADA signage style shows your commitment to accessibility while maintaining your unique branding.

Custom ADA signs also allow you to choose high-quality and durable materials like acrylic or metal that can withstand weathering and match the finishes you use on other business signage. This consistency in material and style elevates your branding across sign types.

The right ADA sign company will work with you to match fonts, colors, logos and understand your brand standards. This ensures your accessible signage blends seamlessly with the look and feel you want to achieve with your storefront, interior or branded environments. It presents a unified and professional image to customers.

Local Sign Company Expertise

Working with a local Kansas City sign company that specializes in ADA signage can be hugely beneficial for businesses aiming to achieve compliance. Local sign companies have extensive knowledge of the latest ADA regulations and best practices for accessible signage in Kansas City.

A local sign company will stay up-to-date with any Kansas City specific requirements or changes to the ADA. They can serve as an invaluable resource to simplify compliance for business owners. Their guiding expertise allows companies to get ADA signage right the first time without any compliance gaps or wasted effort redoing incorrect signs.

Excel Lighting & Signs Capabilities

When it comes to custom ADA signage in Kansas City, Excel Lighting & Signs has comprehensive capabilities to design, produce, and install high-quality signs tailored to your business.

With an expert team of designers, Excel can help you determine the right sign shapes, sizes, materials, colors, and braille options to align with your brand aesthetics and accessibility needs. Their design expertise ensures signs meet all ADA guidelines while maintaining your unique look and feel.

Excel has robust production capabilities in-house, allowing for rapid turnaround of custom signs without sacrificing quality. Their sign shop uses cutting-edge equipment to precision fabricate signs in materials like acrylic, metal, wood, and more.

Finally, Excel’s experienced installers can handle complete sign implementation from permitting to placement. They know all Kansas City codes and will seamlessly handle the entire process for you.

With Excel’s end-to-end custom sign design, fabrication, and installation capabilities, Kansas City businesses can get compliant, customized ADA signs that enhance accessibility and brand image.

Choosing the Right Sign Company

When selecting a sign company to create your custom ADA-compliant signage, it’s important to choose an experienced company that has expertise in accessibility regulations and customer service.

Look for a sign company that has been in business for many years and has extensive experience designing, manufacturing, and installing ADA-compliant signs. They should have a strong portfolio showcasing ADA sign projects for various businesses and industries.

The company should employ designers, engineers, and project managers that have expertise in ADA standards like proper fonts, symbols, braille requirements, and layouts that meet regulations. They should be able to guide you through the technical specifications and requirements to create compliant and customized signs.

Good customer service is also important when choosing a sign company. Look for clear communication throughout the design process, production updates, and installation. They should also provide ongoing support and maintenance to ensure your signs remain compliant.

Taking the time to find an experienced ADA sign company will ensure you get customized, on-brand, accessible signs that meet your needs and legal obligations.

Action Steps for Businesses

If you want to upgrade your establishment’s signage to meet ADA compliance, here are some steps to take:

  • Contact local sign companies to inquire about getting custom ADA signs made.
  • Discuss your specific signage needs and goals for compliance and branding.
  • Request quotes from multiple sign companies to compare options and pricing.
  • Provide the sign company with any images, branding guidelines, or sign dimensions needed.
  • Proof the custom sign designs before final approval and manufacturing.
  • Schedule a timeline for sign installation with minimal disruption to your business.

Investing in custom ADA compliant signs shows your commitment to creating an accessible and welcoming environment for all customers. Partnering with a knowledgeable local sign company ensures you get signs tailored to your business that meet ADA guidelines.


Creating an accessible and ADA compliant environment is crucial for Kansas City businesses. By investing in custom ADA signage that meets regulations and aligns with your branding, you can help ensure your establishment welcomes all patrons.

Working with a knowledgeable local sign company like Excel Lighting & Signs will make the process smooth and painless. Their expertise will help you choose the right materials, sizes, fonts, braille options and more for your custom signs.

Don’t leave accessibility up to chance. Contact the experts at Excel Lighting & Signs today to discuss your brand’s signage needs. Leveraging custom ADA signs is an impactful way to show your commitment to inclusion and compliance.

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