Patio doors are similar to windows in many respects. They are available in a wide range of materials and opening methods. Generally, most patio doors are fitted by window manufacturers given that they are essentially, just giant windows and also used for natural light and ventilation. The main difference is of course that patio doors are also used to enter and leave a room. In most cases, patio doors consist of two pieces, divided in the middle and only one can be opened.
Depending on the door's location, you may want to invest in several security upgrades. Balcony doors are less vulnerable of course but ground level patio doors can benefit from additional locking mechanisms and points around the frame. Locking handles, for example, are available in multiple colors and come with three keys.
In order to make life easier and also provide barrier free access to and from a room, we offer the option of ordering doors with a flush threshold, i.e. level with the floor. This minimizes the risk of tripping, whether for running children or senior citizens, as well as allowing easy access for those with disabilities.
Balcony and patio doors are available in vinyl (uPVC), wood or aluminum clad wood and with different opening options. You can choose between tilt and turn or tilt and slide depending on the location, space and your preference. Optional security upgrades are also possible if the door is located on the ground floor, for example.
Tilt and slide patio doors are especially well suited for residences designed to be barrier free, as they can be opened and used more easily by those in a wheelchair. The same benefits apply to those who suffer from poor eyesight or are blind.
Wood has long been a beloved building material due to its beauty, renewability and toughness. However, it does require regular upkeep in order to maintain it's look and function due to exposure to weather. This includes refinishing, repainting and sanding.
In comparison, vinyl or aluminum clad doors require far less care. Both options maintain their look for far longer and do not require regular refinishing or repainting. This means lower long term costs and less work for the home owner. Aluminum clad wood, for example, is an excellent combination for those seeking the beauty of wood without the required maintenance. The profile is made of 100% wood, however the exterior side exposed to the elements is clad in an aluminum shell. In contrast, the inside is wood, giving the room the beautiful and traditional look desired.
Your choice ultimately depends on your project's individual requirements and your personal taste but the pros and cons of each material are worth keeping in mind.
As environmental awareness increases worldwide along with associated building codes, windows are not the only construction areas where energy-saving measures are taken. Patio doors, essentially large windows, can also be outfitted with the same double or triple insulated glazing as windows. In addition, the space between the panes can be filled with krypton or argon gas to further boost insulation values. Additional options such as noise reducing, ornamental or security glass can also be added.
Part of a patio doors insulating function is not just to keep cold air on the outside, but not allow warm air from the inside to escape. For example, as the sun's rays pass through the glass and enter the home, the heat is absorbed by furniture and other objects on the inside.
These provide a kind of short term heat storage and this solar heat is slowly released, warming your home. This is where the glazing comes into play again, but trapping the heat on the inside and not allowing it to escape back outside. It enables you to better take advantage of free heating from the sun.
Patio doors can also be fitted with shutters or blinds in order to provide more shade or security if desired. Additionally, fly screens can be added enabling the door to be left open for long periods without insects making their way inside.
Whether from the passage of time or faulty installation, patio doors can occasionally allow air in and out. A simple method of testing patio doors for air leaks and drafts is to hold a flame up next to it (candle, lighter etc.) and pay attention to whether the flame is being blown by moving air. Another option is to light a stick of incense and watch the smoke for the same effect.