Get a quote and call our team on

020 4587 8300

Request Quote
A patio door against a yellow wall with text overlay reading "what are patio doors? - types, pros & cons.


What are Patio Doors? – Types, Pros & Cons

Demi Mils
Written by Demi Mils
Updated on 21st May 2024
Posted on 2nd March 2024

Patio Doors Guide

Patio doors are added to the back of homes and are known for their high level of security and ability to let natural light into any home.

This makes a patio door such a valuable addition to any property and well worth it as a long-term improvement in the patio area of a house.

Patio doors also come in all shapes and sizes, meaning the customisation is endless and offers a highly sleek look to any home.

You can see this all for yourself by designing your patio doors at Value Doors.

Design your door

Here, we'll go through all you need to know about patio doors and why they might be the ideal back door for you.

Types of patio doors

Before buying an aluminium patio door, you should know the different patio door types available, as there's a range of different styles that each have their own set of features for homeowners.

Personalisation and design can be done for all patio doors, so you have the perfect set of doors, especially with many being made-to-order.

Sliding patio doors

The mechanism for aluminium sliding doors is simple. To open them, one of the panels slides behind another panel, creating an opening that can let fresh air and sun in.

They're great for saving space in any property, along with creating the effect of more space in a home with their slimmer frames and sightlines.

Aluminium Sliding Patio Doors

Aluminium sliding patio doors will also have enhanced security features due to the strong material, in addition to being easily maintained with soap and warm water.

They can be manufactured to whatever size you require, with most sliding doors having 2-3 panels.

French doors

French patio doors are another kind of patio door, which are traditionally hinged double doors compared to other patio door types.

These French doors open outwards and inwards rather than folding or sliding, allowing more airflow and sunlight through them.

Aluminium French Doors

Traditional French doors are a popular choice as they add to the aesthetic and can bring out any neutral or brighter colours near them.

You can also choose from various styles for a French door, including adding Georgian/astragal bars.

Bifold doors

Another popular patio door style is bifold patio doors, which are fitted with a folding mechanism that can massively help save home space.

Aluminium bifold doors are particularly great for energy efficiency, letting in tons of light with the number of panels they have, as well as slim frames.

Aluminium Bifold Doors

The more natural light that can be let in, the less you need to use your electricity to light your home or heating to keep it warm, meaning you can save a lot on your energy bills.

Saving this much on your bills makes all types of patio doors much more cost-effective, particularly in future years.

When bifolds are open, they can let in a lot of fresh air, which can be excellent for summer when you need a cool summer breeze flowing through your home.

Design your door

Patio door extras & Hardware

When designing your very own patio doors, there are also lots of additions you can make to them, whether this is for practical or aesthetic reasons.

This is so you end up with the perfect set of patio doors that can be a mainstay within your home for a long time.

Integral blinds

An excellent addition to any style of patio doors is integral blinds, which can completely cover the panels, either to stop light from getting in or for more isolation in your home.

Integral blinds can be easily operated, with some even equipped with an automated system that can activate whenever you want.

Aluminium Bifold Doors with Integral Blinds

No matter the size of your bifold doors, Value Doors offers integral blinds that will be able to cover every panel, making sure you can completely blackout whenever you need.

You can also choose the colour of integral Venetian blinds so they can match your new patio doors perfectly.

Double and triple glazing

The glass panels in your patio doors can also have different glazing to make them stronger and have more thermal efficiency.

A triple or double-glazed panel will mean heat loss is reduced in your home, and insulation is much better, so the warmth is kept in your home more as the cold is kept out.

There are other options outside of double-glazed and triple-glazed panels, which can have similar effects, so it is essential to browse and see which is best suited to your taste.

Colours of patio doors

The colour and finish of an aluminium patio door can also be chosen, with a vast variety of standard and RAL colours to pick. All these choices mean you can make the door of your dreams that suits your home's style to a tee.

Astragal bars

You can create specific styles of patio doors when you add extras to them, including astragal or Georgian bars, which are bars that go across the Glass of your new doors. This creates a more historical look, meaning they are a great choice for heritage-style properties.

Aluminium French Doors with Astragal Bars

Adding bars to your patio doors can also improve their security and structure, along with making them much easier to maintain and clean.

Patio door materials

Another customisable feature of getting patio doors is being able to choose the material you want them to be made from. The most popular materials are aluminium, uPVC and timber patio doors, each having its own benefits.

Aluminium is much stronger and a lot less likely to warp or misshape in changing temperatures compared to timber and uPVC doors. They're also very energy efficient and can give homes a superb, sleek look when they are installed.

Design your door

Pros and Cons of Patio Doors

You should also be aware of the advantages and disadvantages of patio doors so you can get a rough idea of what to expect when you get them. You will also be able to know whether a patio door is for you or if you should explore other options.


Energy efficient

One of the major advantages of getting patio doors is how energy and thermally-efficient they are, as they let in tons of sunlight so you don't have to use electricity for lights as much throughout the day.

Thermal break technology is often used on the panels, meaning they reduce heat loss and are around 500x more efficient than just aluminium on their own. Having large panes can also let in a lot more light throughout the day, helping you to save even more.


The design of any kind of patio door will make them much more secure and safe, even more so when they are made from a stronger material, such as aluminium. Glass can also be reinforced to be even stronger, making it very difficult to break the doors down.

Also, it is very common to get patio door security locks for those who have patio doors in their homes, which will increase the standard of security even more.

On top of that, aluminium patio doors at Value Doors will come with multi-point locking mechanisms that easily exceed security standards for doors, which are extremely hard to break to get in.

Easy maintenance

Patio doors can also be maintained easily with soap and warm water, so you don't have to spend excessive amounts on trying to keep them clean and up to scratch. This is especially the case with aluminium patio doors, as the material doesn't damage or warp easily.

This means they are very long-lasting and can be a staple in your property for decades with an uninterrupted view into the garden, making them a very worthwhile investment for long-term house improvement projects.


Even with all of these practical benefits, it still might not be enough to really tempt you unless patio doors look good.

Well, you're in luck, as aluminium patio doors make any home look so much more modern and cleaner, and have plenty of design choices so you have the best style patio doors for your home.

Design your door



One of the few downsides to getting patio doors is that the initial cost you pay might be quite expensive, which can increase depending on any extra extras.

Aluminium patio door prices will also likely cost more than a material like uPVC, especially due to all aluminium's strength and security advantages.

Timber doors are still slightly more expensive than aluminium sliding doors, even more so when considering the long-term cost due to maintenance for timber.

The average cost of aluminium patio doors is around £2500-3000, but you will have a range of payment methods, such as finance options, making it much easier to pay for the manufacturing and installation of the doors.

However, even though patio doors cost quite a big sum initially, the previously mentioned benefits can actually save you money over the years you will have the doors installed.

For example, the energy efficiency and low maintenance that aluminium patio doors have mean you can actually save a lot more money in the years to come, whereas other materials will cost more over time.

Aluminium Sliding Patio Doors


How easy is patio door installation?

For a fully qualified installer, fitting an aluminium patio door is rather easy and getting the fitting done by someone who is Certass or FENSA certified will almost guarantee a high standard of installation.

All of our installers are fully qualified and professional at Value Doors, as we aim to raise the standard of fittings for our customers.

Given everything runs smoothly, patio door installation should take a few hours to fully complete, then you will be able to experience all of the benefits of having patio doors in your home.

Installers can also remove sliding patio doors quite easily, but there are guides available to assist DIYers.

Is aluminium the best material for patio doors?

There are strengths and weaknesses to different materials, but getting an aluminium door does have tons of great benefits that outweigh the disadvantages by far.

Whether you get sliding patio doors, bifold doors or French patio doors, aluminium is a brilliant manufacturing material for all styles of patio doors.

What is the lifespan of patio doors?

Many homeowners will want to know how long patio doors last before buying them, as there isn't any point in investing so heavily for something that doesn't last very long.

A well-maintained aluminium patio door can last well over 30 years and up to 40 years in some cases. This is even more astounding given it takes very little maintenance to keep aluminium patio doors looking clean and new.

Choosing patio doors perfect for you

Hopefully, this complete guide to patio doors has helped you understand the key differences between patio door styles and what makes them unique to other kinds of doors.

Knowing if patio doors are for you and, if so, which type is an important decision to make, especially with how long-term these patio doors are.

Whether it is a bifold door, French door or sliding door, contact Value Doors and get a fixed quote, making sure you get the right doors for your home.

Design your door

Written by
Demi Mils
Demi Mils Apprentice Business Operative
Posted on: 2nd March 2024
Topic: Advice

Demi brings a fresh perspective and dynamic energy to the Value Doors team as our dedicated apprentice business operative. With a passion for learning and a drive to excel, Demi plays a pivotal role in ensuring the smooth operation of our business processes.

More articles

Build Your Doors & Windows Online Design Online Here ➜