Why Choose Sliding Patio Doors?
In every home, the building’s inside and outside bring different charming qualities to the living experience. Location, views, and natural light, some of a property’s biggest selling points, depend on seamless transitions between interior and exterior. It’s hard to overstate the role doorways, the links between inside and out, play in making a house a home.
Sliding patio doors often provide that perfect doorway. With unobtrusive sightline frames and sweeping see-through glass, sliding patio door offer a fluent connection between a home and its environment. Their efficient design proves neater and tidier than wide-swinging doors or bi-folds, lending buildings the sought-after luxury that is extra space. With 21st-century innovations in sliding patio doors, customisation and personalisation options are everywhere. However, there are a few landmarks to look out for on the sliding patio doors journey.
Choosing a Sliding Patio Door Frame
While different frames are better than others, different frame options provide advantages for different doorways budgets.
UPVC Patio Doors
Unplasticised polyvinyl chloride, or UPVC, is the most popular sliding patio doorframe on the market. It draws customers with its durability and cost-effectiveness. At the financially accessible end of exterior access options, UPVC boasts advantages in heat efficiency that other more conductive frames lack. In terms of heating bills and material costs, UPVC frames offer a kinder alternative for the environment as well as the budget.
Wood Patio Doors
Wood provides a natural look for sliding patio doorframes, particularly in the case of homes with wooden windowsills. While fairly heat-efficient and breathable, wood requires varnishes and glosses to protect it from the elements. Of course, hardwoods like oak offer premium durability compared with softer woods like pine. Occasionally, a happy middle ground appears when more expensive woods provide panelling for engineered-wood cores. In the case of both timber and UPVC, their tensile strength slightly requires thicker sills at the cost of sightlines at the frame margins.
Aluminium Patio Doors
As the most robust material so far, aluminium patio doors allow for the slimmest sightlines. Aluminium holds door panes in place with frames as slim as 23mm in some cases. The material is far denser than UPVC, so may require lock and slide runners on larger doorways.
Runners: Lift and Slide Versus Inline
Modern sliding patio doors use inline or lift and slide mechanisms in their opening and closing actions. These systems can now operate on double or even triple tracks, allowing multiple moving panels and customisable doorway solutions.
For door sills less than two metres wide, inline sliding doors are perfect in aluminium, wood or UPVC. Inline systems feature runners directly under the door panels, in constant contact with the inner frames. They rely on the weight of the door itself to roll across the runners. With smaller sliding doors, inline systems make opening a door so easy that you can slide them with your fingertips.
Larger doorways closer to the three-meter width mark may require lift and slide mechanisms. As larger doors add pressure to the runners, lift and slide systems protect the frames and ensure flawless action. In lift and slide patio doors, the door handles rotate 180 degrees, lifting rollers into contact with the door through carefully designed levers and gears. The reduced contact with the frame during door-slide creates a fluent movement and uninterrupted access.
Although sliding patio doors specialise in elegant patio access, engineers and designers create them with safety and security in mind.
Modern doors use multi-point lock systems and with accredited security cylinders, producing reliable and durable door locks. Newer designs use Secured By Design guidelines, an initiative involving police and security professionals ensuring sliding patio doors are as safe as can be.
Sliding patio door owners also look to tints and wraps to deter would-be thieves. Such tints mean that their doors become opaque at night-time. Residents can therefore rest assured at night while still enjoying the view.