Many self builders and renovators are keen to create a seamless connection between the interior of their property.
Sliding doors are a great way to do that – but some products have thicker framework, which you might feel inhibits views and reduces your enjoyment of the space.
Letting as much light in as possible is also key if you want to design a space that’s good for health and wellbeing. It’s for these reasons that ultra-slim sliding doors, with their clean lines and minimal framework, are taking the market by storm.
There’s no defining measurement, but in general companies that offer ultra-slim doors are talking about products with sightlines of 20mm or less.
Interestingly, many customers put a real focus on the exact dimension of the framework – so it’s clearly very important to some people and drives their purchasing decision. There are plenty of options out there, so it’s really important to do your research and identify the best system for you.
Some of the cheaper systems are limited in terms of the size of the panels, which means you might need more doors to span the opening. If budget is tight, it may be better to go for a not-so-slim two-panel sliding door rather than a super-narrow three-panel, as you’ll get less visible framework overall.
Only the higher end of the market will cater for ultra-slim sightlines combined with large panels. It’s essential to consider safety and security on doors of this nature.
Go for a product that’s been thoroughly assessed for high performance levels and has passed the stringent PAS24 tests for security. Doors of this standard will protect your home against the threat of opportunistic criminals.
Generally, the slimmer the framework, the more expensive the door becomes. This is because of the engineering that has to go into make these narrow frames strong enough to perform in the way a homeowner would expect.
Look closely and you’ll find that many of the cheaper, lower-quality ultra-slim sliders actually have quite thick framework at the top and bottom, and maybe the sides too, with just a slim interlocking section of the frame. For superior aesthetics, go for a door with a slim framework all round.
There’s a vast array of pricing in the current market, and you cannot buy a high-quality slimline sliding door on the cheap. As a guide, when compared to a product with average sightlines, expect to pay a premium of at least 20% for a similar specification in an ultra-slim door.
Don’t base your decision purely on the width of the profile in the centre of an ultra-slim slider. This is only relevant if you’re looking at the door square-on: once you move to a different angle, you will also be seeing the depth of the frame. So, consider both aspects and go to see the doors in person before making your choice.
It’s always important to get impartial advice from suppliers who can offer many different options, so you can find a solution that fits best with what you want to achieve in your home. Quality and security should never be compromised for aesthetic, for instance, so getting that balance right for your budget is vital.
It’s also very important to consider how many panels you should go for and how they slide; this can dramatically affect the door’s cost, looks and ease of operation.
|Matt Higgs is co-owner and director of Kloeber. Having been involved in manufacture and construction for over 22 years, he brings a wealth of varied expertise to his role, from carpentry to design, engineering, project managing and contract management.|