06 May 2020

Specifying doors for a conservatory

Neil Ginger, CEO at Origin, offers his insights into the most important considerations when specifying doors for a conservatory.

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1. Type

Bi-fold and sliding doors are the most popular choices for those looking to add a ‘wow-factor’ to their conservatory. Both are fantastic for making a statement and offer the opportunity to seamlessly link the outdoors and indoors by creating uninterrupted panoramic views when open.

Sliding doors take up minimal internal room, making them a fantastic option for properties with limited space. Sliding door panel sizes also tend to be larger, so there is typically more glass and less frame, offering the best views when closed. However, bi-fold doors are the most versatile of the door options and can be installed in a number of configurations, including on corners, making them a great choice for those with more unusual requirements.

2. Style

For homeowners incorporating doors as part of a conservatory, it is important to ensure that the doors marry with the look and feel of the conservatory. All of Origin’s doors are available in over 150 RAL colours, including dual coloured options, ensuring there is an option to fit every type of home. If the conservatory has a gable end, the mullions should line up with the verticals of the door profile below for a clean finish.

3. Materials

There are three main materials which can be used for conservatory patio doors – uPVC, wood and aluminium. Each come with their own benefits. For instance, uPVC is the cheapest option, but comes with thick sightlines and has a tendency to flex and warp in extreme weather conditions.

Wooden frames can look great in period properties but require regular maintenance to keep them looking their best and performing well.

Aluminium, on the other hand, offers a perfect combination of strength, durability and weight, allowing for narrow, more aesthetically pleasing frames to maximise the amount of light let into a property, without compromising on security. The material is resilient to flexing, expanding or contracting and requires very little maintenance. Aluminium doors can also be coated with a realistic woodgrain effect, which is ideal for traditional properties.

4. U-values

For any room that features large expanses of glass, it is important to consider thermal efficiency. The best indicators of thermal efficiency are U-values which show the amount of heat lost in watts per square metre of material. The lower the number, the better the thermal efficiency.

When using triple glazing, Origin’s bi-fold doors, the OB-49 and OB-72 achieve a U-value of 1.2 and 1.3 respectively, the Artisan Slider (OS-20) is a 1.4, whilst the Patio Slider (OS-44 or 77) reaches 1.2, all far exceeding UK requirements.

High-quality doors will also feature a polyamide thermal break in the profile, which is designed to improve energy efficiency, allowing homeowners to enjoy the room all year round.

5. Security

As conservatory doors are likely to link to the outside, it is vital that security is prioritised. For maximum safety, the system should conform to PAS 24: 2016 security standards, have a multi-point locking system on the lead door and an anti-pick, snap, lift and drill locking cylinder/barrel. For ultimate peace of mind, homeowners should opt for doors that are accredited with the police-preferred Secured by Design standard.

Further information....

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