Patio doors – how do you choose the best ones?


Patio doors are undoubtedly the showpiece of any home. As a result, we often opt for large glazed windows that provide plenty of light and create a panoramic view of the garden, where the greenery and flowers even peep inside, thus creating a beautiful and natural decoration. However, it is worth remembering that large glazing and a nice-looking window are not everything. Functionality and security are just as important, if not more so. Therefore, before we decide on a particular model, we should carefully check the parameters and possibilities offered by a given terrace window.

Big glazed patio doors synonymous with modern construction

Panoramic terrace windows, often reaching from the floor to the very ceiling, are currently one of the most fashionable design elements of a new home. It is worth adding at this point, however, that this trend is prevalent not only in new construction, but also in the renovation of old houses, where openings are specially enlarged and much wider window frames are inserted, which have larger glazing and give a new style to the interior.

Both architects and consumers themselves have fallen in love with this way of developing terrace exits, and designers and manufacturers are currently outdoing each other in the proposed design solutions. There is already a choice of windows with or without a threshold, which look truly beautiful!

What should we pay particular attention to when choosing a patio door?

As we wrote a little above, currently joinery manufacturers offer us a very wide range of options and solutions when it comes to choosing a patio door. However, in order for our decision to be a good one, it is necessary to take into account several key factors, which will then influence the final effect. These include the size of the planned glazing, the functionality of the door, its suitability for children or the elderly and acoustics. We will briefly discuss each of these aspects below.

  • Glazing size

This factor is probably the first thing we take into account. After all, we already have to make the decision when the house is built, so it’s worth thinking about the location and size of the door at this stage. Currently, large glazed areas – from the floor, often all the way to the ceiling – are the most popular. Such doors look very impressive and optically enlarge both the interior and the garden outside.

  • The material of which the patio doors will be made

We can divide the material for patio doors into two issues. The first is, of course, the choice of material for the joinery itself. Here we can usually choose between wooden, aluminium and PVC doors. The cheapest option will be the latter, while aluminium doors are the most expensive. This is why more and more people are opting for the classic wooden version, which looks beautiful and fits in with any interior.

The second aspect we need to pay attention to is the mechanism. Therefore, we can choose either an opening door or a sliding door. Nowadays, the sliding ones are definitely more popular, especially as with a larger size there will be no need for bi-fold doors.

  • Door opening method

Finally, we also need to decide on how to open the patio doors. Until recently, we had no choice, as we could only choose inward or outward opening patio doors. Unfortunately, this type of opening meant that space had to be left over, especially as the door leaves were often very large.

Currently, we can opt for a modern and practical solution, such as sliding patio doors. They are convenient to use, save space and at the same time give us a lot of design possibilities when decorating the interior.

  • Insulation

When thinking about insulation or thermal insulation, we don’t need to worry at the moment. Gone are the days when windows were leaky. Nowadays, all standards are defined by European regulations, which manufacturers must comply with. The latest guidelines therefore specify a maximum thermal transmittance of 0.9 W/m2K for windows and patio doors and 0.8 W/m2K for passive windows. Of course, the lower this coefficient is, the better for us.

Sliding patio doors – PSK or HST?

The vast majority of people currently opt for sliding patio doors, which have many advantages. However, even in this case we have a choice of several designs available on the market. Among the most popular solutions at the moment are primarily HST lift-and-slide doors and PSK tilt-and-slide doors. What exactly is hidden under these acronyms? Let us explain.

SPK windows are characterised by the fact that, by turning the handle, we first tilt the sash, which then jumps onto the guide rail mounted at the bottom and then slides sideways on it. Importantly, we can stop the window at the tilting stage at any time, so that we can freely ventilate the room.

HST patio doors, on the other hand, are opened directly using a track concealed in the floor. They also allow for much larger glazings and the threshold hidden in the spout is undoubtedly very impressive. What’s more, typically HST sliding doors are less prone to malfunctions and various types of failure, which is why they are now more often chosen by consumers.

The ease and lightness of operation, the possibility of achieving panoramic glazing and the concealed threshold are all advantages that undoubtedly speak in favour of HST patio doors. However, as we might expect, these differences also affect their higher price, so we leave the final choice to you.

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