Tuesday, 16 December 2008

The Next Generation of Patio Doors is Coming ...

In the Evolution of Patio Door styles, the next generation is upon us.

French doors, the original patio doors, have served well for many years. Elegant, romantic, practical, French doors set the standard and remain the most popular garden doors in new-builds as well as traditional French homes from small stone cottages to Versailles. Materials have varied, from soft and hard woods, metal, alloys and PVC but the traditional two-doors meeting in the middle of a three or four ft opening can be seen in a variety of homes and commercial buildings, world-wide.

In the mid-20th Century in Britain, the sliding patio door became popular - allowing lots of natural light into the home and a great view of the garden. There were a couple of downsides: there was always one side that remained in place, restricting access via only half the original aperture; also it wasn't always easy to slide the door - either the frame warped or the sliding channels became dirty or damaged so that the door stuck. Today's sliding doors often use rolling mechanisms to reduce such problems.

At the beginning of this century, the bifolding door (or folding-sliding door) became widely available in the UK, made from soft and hard woods, PVC or aluminium. The appeal of having an opening wall of folding doors between house and conservatory (for more natural light in the house and maximum space between two rooms) or between home and garden (for maximising light, panoramic views and combining indoors with outdoor space when all doors are folded open) was enhanced by a number of other bonuses: good thermal qualities, better opening mechanisms, low maintenance (Aluminium/pvc) , optional colour choice (Aluminium/wood) and optional, integral blinds in the Aluminium framed folding doors.

In the wings, a new generation of frameless panelled doors awaits! "Glass Curtains" will soon be able to fill apertures currently filled by bifolding doors, with much the same qualities but with the added benefit of no vertical frames between panels and providing an uninterrupted panoramic vista - even round curved areas. The panel system can even accommodate arched apertures, fitting easily inside old cloisters.

Massively popular in warmer climates but with fewer applications here in Britain, "Glass Curtains" are currently available as single-glazed for balcony enclosures or as internal room dividers, both commercially and in the home. It is the newest concept in Open Plan living.

For more information about clear glass curtains and to browse through a few installations, visit the Glass Curtains pages of
http://www.sunseekerdoors.co.uk/ where you can get an obligation-free quotation for your installation.