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Conservatory Doors

If you are planning and designing a conservatory, there are several different parts of the building to think about to achieve the final style you are aiming for. Even if you have chosen a standard design from a conservatory company, or are having a bespoke conservatory designed for you, there are likely to be many decisions to make on the types of material and the finish.

The types of door you choose, both for internal and external doors, will have a major impact on the usability of your conservatory, the look of it and practical issues such as furniture placement.

It is also worth remembering that building regulations state that any doors to the house should be of the same insulating standards as an external house door. For external conservatory doors, there are a number of different styles you can go for, some of the most common are listed below.

French doors can be constructed to varying widths and heights to suit your conservatory and can be fitted with any type of glazing.

French doors are double doors which can be fitted to open inwards or outwards.

French doors

French doors are the classic choice for a conservatory, and remain one of the most popular. They are double doors which can be fitted to open inwards or outwards.

Typically they are installed opening out onto the garden and their double width gives greater access.

The doors can be constructed to varying widths and heights to suit your particular conservatory and can be fitted with any type of glazing.

They may be installed as a part of your conservatory, but most companies will give

you the option to upgrade the choice of glazing, and select the style of frames and handles.


Bi-folding doors

Bi-folding doors are becoming more popular, especially in larger conservatories as they offer greater access when fully opened. They consist of two or three framed full-length panels, which are hinged and open in a concertina effect. The doors can be partially or fully opened as required and can really open up the conservatory to the garden.


Quad doors

Quad doors are a combination of French and bi-folding doors. They are effectively two bi-folding doors which can be used as French doors by opening only the two inner panels, or opened fully to give even greater access. These doors can extend almost the entire length of one side of the conservatory, and can make the room feel like an extension of the garden.


Tilt and slide doors

The most modern type of door on the market is the tilt and slide door, which can be opened in two different ways. The doors can be tilted open horizontally, which allows plenty of fresh air into the room while protecting against rain. Alternatively the doors can slide open against a fixed side panel to give access to and from the room.


Sliding doors

Inline sliding doors are also known as patio doors, and have been used widely on houses to open out onto the patio. They can be used as external conservatory doors but are also often used as the door between conservatory and house. They are made up of two, three or four sashes which slide together to one side. The doors will slide across to collect against one panel, so a door with four sashes can be opened to three quarters of the full size. An advantage of a sliding door is that there is no wasted space, and they have a minimal effect on furniture placement.


Single swing doors

Single swing doors are similar to external house doors, but can be installed to open either inwards or outwards as desired. They can be opened to an angle of 180 degrees, and can be installed as a single door or as double doors. When opening outwards it is common for hooks to be fitted to the conservatory or adjoining walls to secure the doors in place and to prevent the wind blowing them shut.



The doors in a conservatory should be glazed to the same standard as the windows. Most of the heat lost from a conservatory is through the roof, the windows and the doors, and it is pointless installing energy efficient windows if the glass in the door is not of the same standard.

There are many different types of glazing that can be used in doors, and some of which is designed specifically for conservatories. Glazing is available which has speciality coatings applied to aid insulation and energy efficiency.

Coatings on exterior windows reduce heat and light from the sun, which stops the conservatory overheating, and helps to protect furniture. The coatings applied to internal surfaces help to insulate by reducing heat loss when the temperature is lower outside, while also allowing in the full amount of light.

Any door you install should be double glazed, and it may be worth paying extra for argon filled glazing. Most double glazing used to be filled with air between the panes, but it is more common now for glazers to use argon or other gases which are better insulators.

Conservatories can lose heat at up to ten times the rate of a typical indoor room, so the better yours is at retaining heat, the less it will cost to for you to heat it.



The doors of the conservatory play an important role in the style of the finished room, as well as the use of it. Rather than just being functional, a door can open up the space to the garden or the house, and change the way the conservatory is used.

There are a variety of different styles of door available, and you should think about the style and the size of your conservatory when choosing one. If you are building a relatively small conservatory, French doors or single swing doors may suit it best; if you are building a very large conservatory you may want to consider bi-folding doors or even quad doors, to allow greater access and open the room out to the garden.

It is also important to think about the type of glass you use in the doors and how energy efficient it is. As a general rule, the glazing in the doors should be equivalent to that in the windows.

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