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In the modern world of building, home owners, architects and construction businesses alike are all faced with a multitude of choices in entrance door installations. It is important to know all your options so that you are able to choose the best possible door for your home, office or building project.

To make an informed decision, it’s important to be aware of the advantages, features and any possible limitations of the different types of doors. After all, your door will be used daily and is an investment for years to come, so you want to make the best choice.

The smart choice

Before we take a look at the different types of doors, let’s look at some of the features and benefits of aluminium doors. Firstly they are strong, sturdy and durable, and they offer great value for your money in comparison to other types of doors. Aluminium doors require virtually no maintenance, they don’t rust, and even have a high threshold against corrosion. They are customisable to fit huge spaces for residential or commercial applications.

Keep in mind that most of our doors are available in different systems, which means they have different profiles. You can choose a slender profile if you want a modern minimalist style with more glass, or a more bulky thicker profile if you prefer a more formidable or stately look.

Your main varieties of aluminium door types are: sliding doors, sliding-folding doors, hinged doors, and french doors. Now let’s explore these options in more detail.

Aluminium Sliding Doors

Sliding doors are also commonly referred to as patio doors. They are installed to extend over large entrances, and are just as suited to home installations as they are to offices, malls and public buildings. In commercial installations, they are often incorporated into shop fronts, curtain walls and glass facades.aluminium sliding doors

You would consider aluminium sliding doors when your space has a wide entrance, and you want to maximise the view and give your space a bright airy look.

Aluminium sliding doors are available in 2 panels, 3 panels and 4 panels. Generally one panel is fixed in place whereas the others slide open. In the case of 4-panel doors, the two outer panels are fixed.

The beauty of aluminium sliding doors is that they allow for maximum views and an increased flow of light into any building. When coupled with top-lights or sidelights (explained below) these doors will brighten your spaces even more.

Sliding-folding doors

Also sometimes called folding-sliding doors, or concertina doors, aluminium sliding-folding doors make for an innovative way to enclose exceptionally large openings. They are ideal for a lounge or patio where there is a lovely garden or pool outside, or for a balcony door.

When it comes to commercial applications, sliding-folding doors are highly suited to conference rooms or community centres, where you would want an exceptionally wide entrance.

You can also use sliding-folding doors as interior dividers or in place of walls (as long as they are not load-bearing walls). They may be ideal for separating your foyer and living room, or other rooms of your house.

Because these doors are so large, they let in the maximum amount of natural light and create a more open feel by seemingly removing barriers between the interior and exterior of your space.

Where patio doors and french doors are restricted to smaller areas, sliding-folding doors open up extremely wide spaces, in fact up to 9 metres wide. Between 3 and 10 panels can be installed – depending on the entire width of the opening. The standard height of these doors is 2.1 m, but can also be manufactured to a height of up to 2.7 m.

When looking to open up your space, and effectively bring the outdoors in, consider aluminium and glass sliding-folding doors.

Hinged and French Doors

Hinged doors are the most standard kind of doors which are hinged either onto the left or the right side of the door jam. This allows them to open inward or outward (but not both ways) These doors are manufactured either as a single door, or as a double door. The double door variation is commonly referred to as a French door.

Hinged doors are a natural choice in a home or office with standard sized doorways. The singles are ideal for door openings that are under 900 mm in width and the French for openings up to 1.8 m wide.

French doors are suitable as main entrance doors for both commercial and residential buildings. In commercial applications, especially when fitted with glass, they can be installed in offices, conference rooms and shopfronts.

Hinged doors can also be manufactured in a cottage style, if that’s the look you’re going for. Single hinged doors can also be made as stable doors, which makes them a popular choice for kitchen doors.

When it comes to more standard sizes and for more practical applications, hinged and french doors are a solid and sturdy, non-fuss option.

Aluminium finishes

When it comes to aluminium finishes you have both standard and more eccentric choices! The most popular options are either the natural anodised finish (silver), or our standard powder coated colours – namely white, bronze, charcoal (deep grey), black and new silver. Beyond these, for big enough quantities, you can have your door frames powder-coated in almost any colour imaginable to suit your style. Now that’s versatility!

Glazing Options

All of the aluminium doors that we’ve discussed can be fitted with your choice of standard or performance glass, depending on your unique considerations.

You can choose energy saving and comfort glass which makes your indoors much more energy efficient. Or you can opt for security and safety glass which can serve in seriously slowing down potential intruders or reducing the risk of accidents. You can also incorporate aesthetic glass – tinted or reflective – for striking visuals and reflective plays of light.

Then there is acoustic glass for sound reduction, and fire rated glass which is effective at retarding the spread of fire.

Many of these doors can also be double glazed to give your space superior insulation and energy efficiency. Please inquire with our friendly sales team. We’ll help you find the glass that is optimal for your situation.

Top-lights and sidelights

A perfect way to compliment your doors, that you may not know about, is to use top-lights and sidelights. Top-lights refer to the glass inserts above a window or door. Sidelights refer to the glass sections installed directly next to your door, either on one side or both.

You can use top-lights and sidelights in an opening that is considerably wider and higher than the maximum sizes of your door, thus letting in more lights and opening up more of the view.

Sidelights can incorporate sections that are fixed panes, and others that are opening windows, usually in the form of sash windows that are top-hung or side-hung. Top lights usually incorporate fixed panes or top hung windows.

Coupled optimally with your choice of doors, these features let in extra light, they brighten up your space, and can beautifully compliment your home’s aesthetic layout.

Make the right choice

So whether you’re building your new house or you’re an architect working on your new project, aluminium offers you the opportunity to implement a durable, elegant and cost-effective door for your space and building.

Let us help you decide on the best solution and take the responsibility off your hands, so you can walk through the door that has optimal usability, comfort and that secures your premises, be it at work or at home. With Pro, you can always rest assured that you’ve made the professional’s choice.

Contact us on 031 701 2001 (Durban) / 010 003 1889 (Johannesburg) or fill out a request form for your province here: KZN / Gauteng.

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