uPVC Sliding Doors: The Ultimate Guide

6 min read Doors

uPVC sliding patio doors are an extremely popular choice for homes and patios. With their sleek look, energy efficiency, durability, and security features, it’s easy to understand the appeal. This comprehensive guide will explore everything you need to know about uPVC sliding doors.

Introduction

Sliding doors are a great way to open up interior spaces and connect indoors with outdoor patios and decks. uPVC (unplasticized polyvinyl chloride) has become the prime material for sliding doors. uPVC combines strength, weather-resistance, noise insulation, security, and affordability.

This guide will cover the pros and cons of uPVC sliding and sliding glass doors, comparisons with other materials, costs, and help you determine if a uPVC sliding door system is right for your home.

Understanding uPVC Sliding Doors and Are They Any Good?

uPVC sliding doors feature two or more panels that slide along horizontal tracks. They are ideal for patio access, room dividers, and closets.

Advantages of uPVC sliding doors:

  • Energy efficient – Multi-chambered frames and double/triple glazing reduce heat loss
  • Noise reduction – Effective sound insulation from outside noise
  • Minimal maintenance – Don’t require painting or staining
  • Enhanced security – Built-in locks and reinforced frames
  • Cost-effective – More affordable than wood or aluminium
  • Stylish – Sleek look complements modern and traditional homes
  • Easy to clean – Smooth surface just needs occasional washing

uPVC sliding patio doors are available in a wide range of colours and finishes. Popular options include woodgrain textures for a natural look.

The Structure and Reinforcement

uPVC sliding doors are designed to be strong, stable and durable:

  • Multi-chambered profiles – Interior voids add structural rigidity.
  • Steel or aluminium reinforcement – Metal strengthens the frame against force.
  • High-quality weatherstripping – Prevents air and water infiltration.
  • Thermally efficient glazing – Double glass panes or triple panes enhance insulation.
  • Corrosion-resistant hardware – Stainless steel rollers facilitate smooth sliding.

With proper installation and maintenance, uPVC sliding doors will retain their performance and appearance for 20-30 years or more.

Sliding uPVC Patio Doors: An Overview

uPVC sliding doors are commonly used as patio doors leading to back gardens, pools, or terraces.

As patio doors, they provide many benefits:

  • Expansive views – Unobstructed outdoor vistas when the sliding patio door is fully open.
  • Natural light – Glazed doors allow sunlight to fill interior rooms.
  • Ventilation – Fresh outdoor air circulation.
  • Seamless access – Easy entry and exit to the exterior.
  • Space optimisation – Open-plan layouts by breaking down barriers.

With slimmer framing and larger glass panels, modern uPVC sliding glass patio doors allow you to enjoy panoramic outdoor scenery from the comfort of your home.

uPVC Lift and Slide Doors: A New Trend

An innovative variety of sliding door is the lift and slide system. These doors lift slightly off the track while opening and closing by rolling on stainless steel ball bearings.

Benefits of uPVC lift and slide doors:

  • Ultra-smooth and effortless motion – Glide easily with little force.
  • Tight seal – Maintain excellent thermal insulation when closed.
  • Span wide spaces – Manufactured in large sizes up to 6 meters wide.
  • Flush threshold – Sleek, unobtrusive low threshold for seamless indoor-outdoor access.
  • Lift and slide doors combine the clean look and functionality of uPVC with high-end features for a modern statement piece.

uPVC Patio Doors vs. Aluminium Patio Doors

Are aluminium sliding doors better than uPVC?

uPVC and aluminium are two prevalent sliding door materials, each with pros and cons:

uPVC

Pros:

  • More affordable
  • Better thermal efficiency
  • Low maintenance
  • Good sound insulation

Cons:

  • Not as durable over decades
  • Less structural strength

Aluminium

Pros:

  • Very durable and resilient
  • Maximal structural integrity
  • Sleek, contemporary aesthetics

Cons:

  • Lower energy efficiency
  • Requires more maintenance
  • Higher cost

uPVC is ideal if you prioritise value, low maintenance, and energy savings. Aluminium makes the most sense if contemporary style and decades of durability are paramount.

How Much is a uPVC Sliding Door?

Doors can range from £500 to over £2,000 depending on:

  • Size – Larger dimensions cost more.
  • Design – More complex pane configurations add cost.
  • Performance specs – Double glazing is cheeper than triple.
  • Brand – Premium brands will cost more.
  • Hardware – Upgraded handles and locks increase price.
  • Installation – Professional fitting adds labor fees.

Overall, uPVC sliding doors are very competitively priced compared to wooden doors or aluminium options.

What is the better option: sliding patio doors or French patio doors?

Now, both varieties of patio doors have their merits. The optimal decision depends on what suits your home really.

Sliding doors are perfect for limited spaces as one panel slides behind the other, eliminating the need for outward opening.

French doors, on the other hand, tend to be more affordable with both doors opening, usually outwards into a room or outdoor space. Either of these glass patio doors will expand your living area.

What is the best colour for patio doors?

They can come in many different colours, not just the usual black or white sliding patio doors you tend to see.

Most of the 1000’s of RAL colours can be powered coated to aluminium frames, meaning you can colour coordinate with your internal and external design schemes.

uPVC doors have a more limited colour spectrum, offering a more standardised range of colours.

Security Features of uPVC Sliding Doors

Each aluminium, uPVC and timber sliding patio doors are constructed from systems with Secured By Design status, meaning not only have they undergone rigorous industry testing to qualify for this official police initiative, but their modern designs also meet the superior quality standards expected by the scheme.

Our sliding patio doors are fitted with a multitude of security features to protect your home, including the following:

  • PAS 24:2012 security tested – a method to test the security performance of new doors, as required by the British Standards Institute.
  • Anti-jacking technology – this prevents the glass panes of the sliding door from being levered open.
  • Anti-lift blocks – it’s fitted in the rails to stop the sliding door being lifted from the outside and allowing unwanted access.
  • Hook latches – this restricts the opening of the sliding door, preventing intruders from gaining access into your home.
  • Multipoint locking – this system locks at several points, providing superior protection against forced entry into the keyhole.
  • Toughened glass – up to five times stronger than normal glazing panes, this is an additional type of safety glass that adds significant strength to your home security.

Conclusion

These doors offer an affordable, low-maintenance option for enhancing your home’s access, light, ventilation, and connection to outdoor spaces.

With durable construction, ample customisation possibilities, energy efficiency, and enhanced security, they are a smart choice for lasting value, functionality and style.

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