Common Misconceptions About Patio Doors

Many people admit that they love the look of patio doors, but they have concerns about security, safety and energy efficiency. The clever design and sturdy build of most modern patio doors make them a great choice for many homes, if you can look past a few mistaken beliefs. Here are some common misconceptions that people have about patio doors, and the truth about each one.

Misconception: Patio doors are not secure

The idea that patio doors are not secure comes from the fact that older models of patio doors really weren't all that secure. Flimsy frames, weak glass and unreliable locking mechanisms made them targets for thieves looking for an easy entry point. However, newer doors are much more secure, built to keep out intruders and meant keep your home safe and sound.

Modern patio doors are set into wooden or metal frames and are sturdier than their predecessors. These doors may have one of several different types of locks, including ones that are built into the actual patio door frame for added security. 

In addition to any built-in security features, homeowners have the option to add things like child safety locks for patio doors and exterior security gates, which are ideal for preventing anyone from opening the doors from the outside.

Misconception: Patio doors are not safe

Any door that consists of a large sheet of glass may seem unsafe, but thanks to modern glazing technologies, that's just not true. Many patio doors feature impact resistant glass, which is protected by a special coating that prevents the glass from fully shattering, and that holds it in place inside the frame even after a heavy impact. This is the same type of glass used in hurricane windows, which can withstand up to Category 5 wind conditions.

For homes with small children, patio doors may seem like an unsafe choice, especially if the patio doors slide open easily. Even without an additional child safety lock, sliding patio doors can easily be secured with a security bar that fits inside the bottom section of the door's track. These bars, designed to keep intruders from forcing open a sliding glass door, also prevent children from getting outside unattended if the door is left unlocked.

Misconception: Patio doors are not energy efficient

Having a large pane of glass in one room may not seem like the most energy efficient option, but with the right glass in your patio doors, it could make them one of the most efficient windows in your home. Glass doors have a lower glass-to-frame ratio than windows do, allowing them to provide more insulation than windows do, provided they use the right type of glass. Extra-strong double-glazed glass used in newer patio doors is not only impact resistant, but energy efficient, too. 

Sliding glass doors let in plenty of natural light, reducing the need for extra lighting during the daytime. Not only can you take advantage of the sun's light with patio doors, but you can also use them to enjoy a great view or keep an eye on your property.

When it comes to energy efficiency, it should be noted that sliding glass doors are not as energy efficient as swinging or french doors. This is because it is difficult to completely seal the track that the door slides on in order to block air flow. With newer sliding patio doors, there isn't usually a great deal of energy loss due to this flaw, but if you are concerned, there are ways to reduce the airflow. 

  • Keep the track clean and clear of debris to allow a tighter fit for the door.
  • Insulated drapes, blinds and blackout curtains can help improve energy efficiency.

Don't be deterred from having patio doors installed in your home by falling for these common misconceptions. Most of the problems plaguing older patio doors have been eradicated, and today's doors are efficient, secure and a very enjoyable feature to have in your home. For more information, contact a local patio doors installation company.