Advice & Inspiration

Which Patio Doors are the Most Energy Efficient?

Folding & French Patio Doors

As the seasons change and we look forward to enjoying our outdoor spaces, it’s essential to consider the energy efficiency of your patio doors. Not only can energy-efficient doors help reduce your carbon footprint, but they can also save you money on heating and cooling bills.

Due to the fact that the UK’s domestic housing sector contributes approximately 27% of its carbon emissions and that private rented homes are required by law to have an energy rating of E or higher, many homeowners and landlords are investigating the most effective ways to increase the energy efficiency of their buildings.

In this article, we’ll explore various types of patio doors such as sliding doors, bifold doors and french doors and highlight the features that make them energy efficient.

Understanding Energy Efficiency in a Patio Door

Before we delve into the specifics of patio doors, let’s first understand what makes a door energy efficient. Energy-efficient doors are designed to minimise heat transfer between the interior and exterior of your home. They achieve this through various features such as insulation materials, multiple layers of glass, and tight seals to prevent drafts.

Opting for the most energy-efficient patio door option should be your first priority when considering a replacement for your property. Energy prices are rising, so it makes sense that homeowners are looking to install the most energy-efficient solutions available. Energy efficiency is more vital than ever. 

Thermal efficiency is a must for savvy homeowners hoping to reduce their energy use and carbon footprint. The energy required to maintain a pleasant temperature in your home can be minimised with high-quality energy efficiency, so heating your house doesn’t have to be expensive.

Before spending money on the newest insulation and heating, it makes sense to replace inefficient windows and doors, which can account for up to 40% of energy waste in the house.

Types of Patio Doors to Consider for Energy Efficiency

Patio doors are a popular sight in British homes, and with good reason—they make beautiful “walls of glass” that let in an abundance of natural light, they work well in homes with limited space, and they’re quite easy to use. 

While cost, size, colour, and design are all important aspects, what about energy efficiency?

Glass Sliding Patio Doors

Sliding patio doors are a popular choice for many homeowners due to their sleek design and ease of use. These doors consist of large glass panels that slide horizontally along a track. While they provide excellent views and natural light, not all sliding patio doors are created equal in terms of energy efficiency.

Because glass is not an insulating material, a sliding patio door can generally lose more heat and energy than other types of doors. Many contemporary external glass sliding doors have thermal breaks installed to address this issue. These breaks serve as insulation between the inner and exterior portions of the door frame.

Bifold Patio Doors

Bifold patio doors are another stylish option that can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home. These doors fold and stack to one side, creating a wide opening that seamlessly connects your indoor and outdoor spaces. When choosing bifold patio doors, look for models with energy-efficient glazing and thermal breaks to prevent heat loss.

Contemporary aluminium bifold doors can achieve extremely high thermal efficiencies even though they are composed of conductive material. Thermal energy loss by conductive means is prevented by a thermal break incorporated into the frame of aluminium bifold doors.

In order to do this, low heat conductivity materials are added to the frame, dividing its two sides. This effectively “breaks” the heat-conducting process, resulting in an insulating frame made of a material that wouldn’t normally insulate.

An aluminium bifold door can provide exceptional thermal efficiency by using thermal breaks. An aluminium door has several advantages and won’t reduce the energy efficiency of your house because it is strong, lightweight, and long-lasting.

French Patio Doors

French patio doors add a touch of elegance to any home with their classic design featuring multiple panels of glass. These doors swing open on hinges, providing a traditional look and feel. To ensure energy efficiency, opt for uPVC or aluminium French patio doors with double or triple glazing and insulated frames.

Should the traditional design of external French patio doors captivate you, you must ask: Are French doors energy-efficient? You’ll be happy to hear that, in fact, they may be very energy efficient! Well, assuming you choose a set of doors that are sturdy and well-made.

This is because the energy efficiency of each given door depends on a wide range of parameters.

It goes beyond the material composition or thickness of your external French doors. For instance, the amount of heat that a door lets out depends greatly on how well it fits into its frame.

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Aluminium Patio Doors

Aluminium patio doors are known for their durability and strength, making them a popular choice for modern homes. While aluminium is a highly conductive material, energy-efficient aluminium patio doors feature thermal breaks and low-emissivity coatings to improve insulation and reduce heat transfer.

UPVC Patio Doors

UPVC patio doors offer an affordable and low-maintenance option for homeowners seeking energy efficiency. UPVC is a plastic material known for its insulating properties and resistance to heat loss. Look for UPVC patio doors with multi-chambered frames and double glazing for optimal energy efficiency.

Features of Energy-Efficient Patio Doors

Double or Triple Glazing

One of the most important features of energy-efficient patio doors is the type of glazing used. Double or triple glazing consists of multiple layers of glass separated by a gas-filled space, which acts as insulation. This helps to reduce heat loss and improve thermal efficiency.

Low-E Coatings

Low-emissivity (Low-E) coatings are thin, virtually invisible layers applied to the glass surface to reflect heat back into the room. This helps to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature year-round by reducing heat transfer through the glass.

Insulated Frames

In addition to the glazing, the frames of energy-efficient patio doors play a crucial role in preventing heat loss. Look for doors with insulated frames made from materials such as wood, UPVC, or aluminium, which help to minimise thermal conductivity.

Tight Seals

Effective weatherstripping and seals around the edges of the patio doors are essential for preventing drafts and air leakage. Inspect the seals regularly and replace them if they show signs of wear or damage to maintain optimal energy efficiency.

Choosing the Right Patio Doors for Your Home

When selecting patio doors for your home, consider the climate, orientation, and architectural style of your property. While energy efficiency is paramount, you’ll also want to choose doors that complement your aesthetic preferences and functional requirements.

If you live in a colder climate, prioritise doors with high thermal resistance to keep your home warm and comfortable during the winter months. Conversely, if you reside in a warmer region, look for doors with low solar heat gain to reduce cooling costs in the summer.

Additionally, consider the orientation of your patio doors concerning sunlight exposure. South-facing doors may benefit from low-E coatings to block excessive heat gain, while north-facing doors may require additional insulation to retain warmth.

Looking for Contemporary and Energy Efficient Patio Doors?

Investing in energy-efficient patio doors is not only beneficial for the environment but also for your wallet. By choosing doors with features such as double glazing, low-E coatings, insulated frames, and tight seals, you can improve the comfort and energy efficiency of your home while enjoying beautiful views of your outdoor spaces.

Whether you prefer sliding, bifold, French, aluminium, or UPVC patio doors, there are plenty of options available to suit your needs and budget. So why wait? Upgrade to new patio doors today and start enjoying a more energy-efficient home!

DoorsDirect2U have over 40 years of experience providing internal door and external door solutions to suit all budgets and specifications. You can purchase with confidence safe in the knowledge all products are backed with a manufacturers guarantee.

Shop all Patio Doors , Bifold Doors and French Doors or Contact Us for expert advice!

Energy Efficient Patio Doors UK FAQs

What are the benefits of energy-efficient patio doors?

Energy-efficient patio doors offer several benefits, including reduced energy bills, improved indoor comfort, and a smaller carbon footprint. They help to keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer by minimising heat loss and heat gain.

How do I know if a patio door is energy efficient?

Look for key features such as double or triple glazing, low-E coatings, insulated frames, and tight seals. Energy-efficient patio doors are also often certified by organisations like the Energy Saving Trust, so be sure to check for relevant certifications.

Are sliding patio doors energy efficient?

Sliding patio doors can be energy efficient if they are properly insulated and feature double or triple glazing. Look for models with thermal breaks and low-E coatings to improve their energy efficiency.