Sliding patio doors are also called gliding patio doors or sliding glass doors. The main feature of this door is one stationary door panel and one operational panel which glides horizontally. These doors fit well than hinged doors and require less space. Sliding patio door allows for furniture to be placed nearby and they also offer a large surface area for natural light enter the room. They are available in different materials, designs, and sizes. These are further divided to contemporary and classic sliding patio doors.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Sliding Patio Door
First, do not choose any door just because it slides and fits your budget. At the same time, you should find a door which compliments the style of your home. For example, contemporary homes are well complemented by modern doors while sliding doors modeled after French doors are best suited for traditional homes.
Second, It is important to choose a style that bests suits you; there are more styles to choose from other than the two-panel traditional sliding door.
French sliding doors have four panels and are designed to give a traditional look because they are flat.
Telescoping patio doors have at least three panels with the advantage of a wide opening. When the door is open fully, each panel slides over all the others.
Lift panel doors offer an unblemished view, and they can be expensive to install. These doors do not slide horizontally but they slide upwards, and the door is hidden in the wall.
Bi-fold doors are a four-panel door with sliders at the bottom and on top. When you open the panels, they swing outward while folded in half.
Third, choose the material you would like to have for your door. The common materials you can choose from are vinyl, wood, aluminum clad over wood or aluminum. Vinyl has a variety of styles to choose from, and it is less expensive. Wood suffers extensively from different weather conditions. Aluminum doors are damage resistant and durable.
Fourth, an energy efficient door with an excellent insulator is the best option. A real durable sliding door should have a plastic door frame with thermal breaks, low emission coatings, heat-absorbing tints and layers of glass.
Lastly, consider the long term and short term costs. Vinyl is less expensive on a purchase but when the cost of maintenance and replacement of a cracked vinyl door, it ends up being costly. A high energy efficient door is expensive on a purchase but will save you on air conditioning and heating bills compared to little energy efficiency door.