Because slide-and-pivot doors have no hinges, there is no requirement for a sturdy side frame; its only purpose is to cover the gasket that seals the double glazed unit. This means that the views afforded through the expanse of patio doors have minimal interruptions. At the time of writing, there are two versions of frame-less glass doors available in the UK, both using the slide-and-pivot technique: one manufacturer supplies their frameless glass doors with kite-marked double glazed units which have a visible seal, the other uses an almost transparent method of sealing their double glazing. Contemporary by design, the absence of visible characteristics makes frameless glass doors a viable option for period properties.
There are two basic types of patio doors which include the hinged patio doors and the sliding or gliding patio doors. Hinged doors are normally available as French doors which come in a set of two doors. These normally open to the outside and may have a lot of glass incorporated into their overall construction, thus allowing you a view of the outside. There are certain other hinged doors that come in the form of accordion doors and are therefore able to fold open. If you are living in regions with warmer climates, you should consider investing in a good pair of accordion doors which also happen to be very space efficient. On the other hand, the sliding patio doors are normally available in a set of two, in which case one door slides past the other and in most cases these are entirely made out of glass.
Patio doors may be constructed from a broad spectrum of materials. These include glass which is the most common choice, and which may be incorporated as a solid panel or in a multitude of small panels which are set within a frame. If you reside in colder climates, you may consider having your glass double paned, insulated or specially treated such that its able to trap the heat inside your home. Alternatively, you could go for doors made from aluminum and vinyl, which tend to be cheaper options ideal for those working with a tight budget. You should however keep in mind that you get what you pay for and should therefore not expect aluminum or vinyl doors to wear as well as the glass patio doors.
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