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Glass Doors: Varieties, Device, Components, Installation And Operation Features
Glass Doors: Varieties, Device, Components, Installation And Operation Features

Video: Glass Doors: Varieties, Device, Components, Installation And Operation Features

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Types of glass doors, their advantages, installation and operation features

Glass entrance lobby
Glass entrance lobby

Glass doors, which appeared in architectural and interior design simultaneously with hi-tech and techno styles, have become a frequent attribute of banks, shopping malls, and public buildings. Modern designers actively use glass entrances in suburban housing construction and residential interiors. The material is popular for its increased light transmission and rich decorative possibilities.


  • 1 Features of glass doors
  • 2 The use of glass doors in exteriors and interiors
  • 3 Glass door design
  • 4 Glass door designs, their features

    • 4.1 Swing glass doors
    • 4.2 Folding structures
    • 4.3 Sliding, sliding and sliding structures
    • 4.4 Telescopic glass doors
    • 4.5 Pendulum glass doors
    • 4.6 Radius doors
  • 5 DIY glass door installation

    • 5.1 Self-installation of the swing door

      5.1.1 Video: fastening the hinges to the glass of the door leaf

    • 5.2 Features of installation of sliding, radius, telescopic structures

      5.2.1 Video: Glass Door Installation

  • 6 Repair and restoration of glass doors

    6.1 Video: replacing the metal frame of a glass door

  • 7 Accessories for glass doors
  • 8 Caring for glass doors

Features of glass doors

For a long time, the use of glass as a structural material was limited by its low strength. Glass inserts were used only as fragments of door leaves. With the invention of new methods of melting and tempering glass, the advent of multilayer triplex, restrictions on the size and design of glass doors have disappeared. The strength of glass door leaves is not inferior to metal structures, and the service life exceeds 50 years.

The main materials for glass door panels are laminated triplex and tempered sheet glass. Triplex, familiar to everyone from car windows, is durable, when destroyed, it does not give cutting fragments. Glass fragments of triplex are held on the inner layer of soft plastic. Less commonly used are reinforced glass (with fused metal mesh) and acrylic colored glass (in fact, a kind of plastic).

Float and fusing methods are used to make elite glass canvases. Float glass, due to the addition of minerals to the melt, can be painted in various colors - shades of gray, bronze, blue, green. When glass is rolled with special cylinders, embossed patterns or ornaments are applied to the surface. Expensive stained glass door panels are made using fusing technologies. A mosaic-like pattern is manually assembled from multi-colored glasses, after which the artistic composition is baked in a muffle furnace.

Float glass door
Float glass door

Float glass doors are not only durable but also beautiful

Designers refer to the advantages of glass as a material for door panels:

  • high light transmission (an abundance of light is one of the main trends in modern design);
  • strength;
  • variety of decor;
  • the ability to use in most door designs;
  • immunity to atmospheric moisture, steam;
  • thermal insulation qualities;
  • fire safety;
  • quiet operation when using high-quality fittings;
  • extensive automation capabilities.

The only significant drawback of the material is the weight of the glass. Tall and wide glass sheet 12-15 millimeters thick can weigh up to 100 kilograms. Therefore, glass door designers use intermediate supports or reinforced door hinges, powerful swing mechanisms.

The use of glass doors in exteriors and interiors

The use of glass doors for the entrance groups of commercial and public buildings, entertainment complexes has become a sign of respectability. In shops, bars, restaurants, transparent doors, along with solid showcases, give passers-by the opportunity to see expositions, an influx of visitors, and a cozy interior. Glass entrance groups serve as a means of additional advertising. In banks, the use of glass doors with one-sided transparency allows security guards to control the situation before entering a financial institution. Automation makes it possible to hold the doors open or tightly block the entrance.

The use of interior glass doors has found wide application in the interiors of offices and workshops of high-tech industries. The American and Japanese principles of democratizing offices with transparent glass doors demonstrate to the team the efficiency of managers, allow the bosses to constantly monitor the work in the common room. It is fashionable to place a logo or other company symbols on office doors.

In suburban construction, glass doors built into a solid glass wall embody the idea of ​​unity with nature. When the door is open, the interior of a hall or studio becomes part of a common space with a park, a backyard or a spacious pool terrace.

Glass door in the interior
Glass door in the interior

Sliding glass doors in a country house can combine the living room and the terrace

Glass doors are used less frequently in the interiors of urban small apartments. The most daring fans of avant-garde design install glass structures at the entrance to the bathroom. Transparent glass is practically not used for such doors; colored or matte material is used. But the transparent glass door at the entrance to the nursery is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also allows parents to control the baby or small child when they are busy in the adjacent room. There are no obstacles to installing a glass door in the kitchen.

Glass door design

In terms of style, the use of all-glass doors is limited to the main style of facade or interior design. Designers distinguish between two types of door design: with canvases made of solid sheets of glass and in edging (frames, bindings) made of metal, wood, and plastic. Frameless and frame structures differ in strength, application and installation features.

High-tech styles, techno, minimalism, eclecticism do not limit the use of glass doors. If on the facades of houses in the Empire or Art Nouveau style glass entrance groups look like a foreign body, then modern buildings with a mirrored or glass facade wall are difficult to imagine with a different entrance. At the same time, large glass canvases go well with wild stone, granite, marble, natural greenery, which are actively used by architects of public buildings and country houses.

In high-tech interior design, glass doors are organic. Extensive glass surfaces go well with metal (black, colored, polished), plastics. In modern styles of country houses, entrance sliding glass walls and interior doors made of glass can be combined.

High-tech doors
High-tech doors

The use of interior glass doors makes the interior "airy"

Also, glass doors fit well into eclectic interiors based on a combination of dissimilar furniture and decor.


Glass doors can be combined with furniture and decorative elements

Designers practically do not use glass doors when imitating historical styles: for the classics, antiques, gothic, Romanesque, imperial styles, such designs are unnatural. The same can be said about retro, vintage, country, provence styles. In these interiors, the use of glass doors spoils the stylistic purity and introduces features of eclecticism.

To fit an interior glass door into the Empire, Art Nouveau, Neoclassical styles, designers have to complement glass canvases with wooden, metal figured bindings, characteristic add-ons over the door, drawings or engravings on the glass.


A glass door in the Art Nouveau style can be decorated with a wooden binding, corrugation on the glass

To decorate glass doors for the characteristics of various styles, designers and manufacturers use various artistic techniques:

  • glass matting;
  • sandblasting;
  • staining of glass mass;
  • stained-glass windows (jellied, contour, film);
  • engraving;
  • bevelling;
  • fusing elements;
  • photo printing;
  • hand-painted with transparent acrylic;
  • overhead metal elements.

It is possible to select ready-made glass doors only for the standard sizes of doorways. For country houses, public buildings, original architectural structures, glass doors are made according to individual orders.

Glass door designs, their features

By design, glass doors do not differ from entrances made of other materials. For glass sheets, only roll, tilt-and-slide and lift-and-slide structures are not used.

Among the demanded glass door designs are:

  • swing;
  • folding (with varieties of "book" and "accordion");
  • sliding (sliding, sliding);
  • pendulum;
  • radius.

Front entrance groups made of glass and interior glass doors do not differ structurally. Facade doors are larger in size, so one-piece glass sheets are less often used in them. To increase strength, large glass surfaces are used with metal edging, bindings. Pendulum and radius structures are less commonly used. Carousel (rotary) glass structures are used mainly for front entrance groups.

For interior doors, designers use the entire range of door designs, with the exception of revolving ones.

Hinged glass doors

The swinging design with one-sided hinges is traditional and is used everywhere. The disadvantage of a swing door is the excessive consumption of useful space in the room. On the opening side of the furniture, a sector of 180 degrees should be free. For double-leaf doors, the unoccupied space must be doubled.

At the same time, the leaf of each sash does not differ in excessive weight, which makes it possible to use solid glass. Swing structures are equally often used for entrance and interior doors.

Swing doors and glass wall
Swing doors and glass wall

A swinging structure made of solid glass for the entrance to a country house is harmoniously combined with wild stone and natural greenery

Folding structures

Folding door construction is based on hinged joints of several glass sheets. As a rule, support rollers or wheels are installed under the hinged joints of the panels (vertical axis), along which the door moves along the guides for opening. Designs of two or four panels, called "book", replace single or double wing doors.

Folding glass door
Folding glass door

One-leaf glass "book" is perfect for a small city apartment

The advantage of folding structures is space saving. When opened, the door covers the narrow floor strips on both sides of the doorway. The one-leaf folding "book" made of glass is convenient for narrow interroom openings in small apartments. Asymmetric door leaves can be used for the “book” design.

An arbitrary number of glass canvases is used in folding structures of several panels, popularly called "accordion" for the resemblance to the furs of a musical instrument.

Folding doors on the veranda
Folding doors on the veranda

The folding door structure opening onto the terrace can be in harmony with the cladding brick, garden paths in the color of the cover

The increase in the number of canvases makes the door heavier, therefore edging, frames, bindings are used for glass door structures. "Accordion" doors can be used to design internal exits from the house to the courtyard, use them as folding interior partitions.

The disadvantages of folding structures are the complexity of accurate installation, limited style use. Accordion doors are bulky, which limits their use in city apartments.

Sliding, sliding and sliding structures

All these structures are based on the movement of the door leaf to the sides along the guides installed in the floor (or in the floor and ceiling). An important advantage of the structures is the complete release of usable space on both sides of the door.

Sliding and sliding doors differ in the same way as single-leaf and double-leaf swing designs. The sliding door opens in one direction, the two leaves of the sliding structure diverge in different directions.

Sliding doors to the terrace
Sliding doors to the terrace

Sliding and swing glass doors in a private house are often combined

Sliding doors with a wide doorway opening are actively used for entrance groups of public buildings with a large number of visitors. Design features make it possible to automate the entrance, use electric motors, photocells.

Automatic sliding doors
Automatic sliding doors

Sliding doors at the entrance to an office or store are usually made automatic

For all sliding doors, designers use special guides (from a metal pipe, strip, profile), roller carriages, stoppers, clamps. For the specifics of using sliding structures with an open and closed rail in an apartment, it is better to consult with specialists.

With the unity of the general principle of operation, sliding doors differ from sliding and sliding structures by movement on wheels, fixed at the bottom and top of the canvases. This helps to evenly distribute the load on the guides, to protect the blade from falling out.

Sliding doors to the terrace
Sliding doors to the terrace

With the help of sliding doors to the terrace, you can expand the space of the room

The design of sliding and sliding structures with decorative covers that hide carriages and guides, frame edging for a targeted design is possible with an individual order of glass doors.

Telescopic glass doors

Telescopic doors are one of the types of sliding structures. A significant design difference is that when the door is opened, one or more canvases go behind adjacent glass fragments or hide in the gap of the doorway.

Telescopic door
Telescopic door

Telescopic glass doors allow you to freely vary the width of the entrance

A specific design was invented for the decoration of wide entrance groups. For use in sports and shopping centers, telescopic glass doors are usually automated, since it is difficult to manually open the volumetric door.

A telescopic door with several leaves allows you to freely vary the width of the entrance, but its installation is a difficult job. In residential premises, such structures are practically not used, with the exception of high-tech country houses.

Pendulum glass doors

The use of glass swing doors is specific, but it is difficult to call this design innovative. Two-sided wooden doors have been used in French and American taverns and bars for two hundred years. In modern designs, glass swing doors are installed in glass walls and transparent partitions without a pronounced doorway. Most often, the design is used for shopping malls and, traditionally, for bars and restaurants.

The advantages of a pendulum glass door are good visibility, convenience for entering, aesthetics. Glass can be decorated with stylized patterns, polished edges. The use of matting and toning is limited in the decor. To avoid being hit by a door, a suitable visitor must be able to see the oncoming visitors.

Pendulum door
Pendulum door

Through the gaps of the frosted glass of the pendulum door, the movement of oncoming people should be visible

When installed in door frames, swing doors are equipped with special hinges. Constructions with the rotation of the canvases around the axes on special mechanisms are also used. The pendulum effect, which gave the name to the structure, is extinguished by closers. To limit the opening of the door to the floor, rubber-coated stops are mounted or opening closers are installed.

Calculation of loads on axles, hinges, fittings, clamping profiles complicates the manufacture of the structure. When installing swing doors, precision accuracy, reliability of fasteners and accessories are required.

Swing doors require twice as much free space as swing doors. This feature limits the use of construction for residential premises, small apartments.

Radial doors

Radial glass doors are designed for modern architecture buildings with curved walls and room entrances. Tinted glass allows mounting of swing, sliding or sliding doors. In sliding structures, a curved curved canvas is used that opens along a radius path.

Radial glass doors
Radial glass doors

Radial glass doors to the meeting room will look original and prestigious

Installation of sliding radius doors is complicated by the use of curved guides along which rollers or wheels of a special design move. Glass radius doors are mainly used in the design of offices, VIP-zones of expensive hotels and entertainment complexes, country houses of author's architecture.

Radial doors are more aesthetically pleasing and more functional than entrances with a complex angular configuration, but the glass bending capabilities limit their dimensions (at least two to three meters). An important feature is the uniqueness of each glass radius structure.

DIY glass door installation

It is unrealistic to make a glass sheet with your own hands, but the assembly of purchased sheets, the device of the door frame in the opening, the installation of roller carriages and guides can be done independently.

Self-installation of a swing door

Working with finished glass sheets is limited by their dimensions and weight; for one person, only small doors in residential premises can be installed. Standard dimensions of glass doors, with which one person can work independently, are 0.74–0.76 meters in width, 1.95–1.98 meters in height.

When self-assembly and installation of glass swing doors, you must perform the following simple work:

  1. Preparing the doorway. The width and height of the hole in the wall is adjusted to the dimensions of the door frame. It may be necessary to cut the wall or reduce the opening.
  2. Securing the door frame. It is fixed to the walls with anchor bolts. The use of wooden plugs is not recommended.
  3. Fastening to the box of the mating parts of the door hinges. It is carried out with the hardware included in the door kit. In their absence, long screws, screws, self-tapping screws are used.
  4. Installation of hinges, lock handles on a glass sheet. If there are no factory holes in the canvas, the mounting points are drilled. Holes are not required for hinge hold-down structures.
  5. Hanging the door on the hinges. The work of two or three people is desirable, the use of vacuum suction cups.
  6. Filling the gaps between the box and the opening with polyurethane foam.
  7. Doorway decoration.

Video: fastening the hinges to the glass of the door leaf

Features of installation of sliding, radius, telescopic structures

For the installation of sliding, radial, telescopic structures with automatic control, highly qualified installers and adjusters of automation are required.

The cycle of installation work includes the following operations:

  • accurate measurements and creation of an individual installation scheme;
  • preparation of the doorway and adjacent walls;
  • reliable strengthening of the guides on the walls and in the floor;
  • installation of holders, hinges, carriages, rollers, wheels on a glass sheet;
  • door installation;
  • installation of electrical equipment and automation;
  • performance check, adjustment of mechanisms, testing of automatic devices.

It is easier to install hinged glass doors, in which the main thing is the correct and reliable fastening of door hinges and handles to the glass sheet.

When installing glass doors, professionals, in addition to the usual tools, use drills with special drills for glass, screwdrivers, perforators, vacuum handles to hold glass sheets during installation.

Video: installing a glass door

Repair and restoration of glass doors

The most common damage to glass structures is wear and tear of fittings and movement mechanisms (doors warp, stop opening normally), cracks and scratches on triplex canvases, destruction of solid glass canvases.

During repairs, all-glass canvases are completely changed. Shallow mechanical damage to triplex (from natural wear and tear, vandalism) is eliminated by deep grinding and polishing the glass.

Cracks and chips in the triplex are sealed with polymer compounds; for this, special materials and tools are used. Light foggy cobwebs and small spots after such repairs are masked with drawings or ornaments. When the fittings (hinges, locks, handles) wear out, they are completely replaced, like the movement mechanisms.

Video: replacing the metal frame of a glass door

Accessories for glass doors

The set of accessories for the installation or repair of glass doors depends on the design, has hundreds of items, types and sizes. Of the main components, it can be noted:

  • guides U-shaped profiles (aluminum, steel, top, bottom);
  • stoppers;
  • carriages;
  • videos;
  • wheels;
  • loops;
  • decorative covers and facings.

For the operation of motion mechanisms, the technical characteristics of guides, rollers, wheels, door hinges are important. To increase corrosion resistance, steel guides and hinges are anodized, plated with chrome and nickel. By design, door hinges are divided into overhead, hidden, spring, swinging. For the manufacture of rollers, steel with a polymer or rubber coating is used. The carriages connect the upper and lower door mounts to the wheels and are supplied with latches and latches.

Accessories for glass doors
Accessories for glass doors

Various types of coatings are used for style decoration of components: anodized, chrome, nickel

When selecting components for quality, it is better to trust the recommendations of professionals.

Glass door care

During operation, glass doors, despite their strength, must be protected from strong impacts. To do this, use rubberized stops on the floor and walls, special damping mechanisms, door closers.

The durable and durable material does not require special care. Glass can be cleaned with a damp cloth, washed with hot water, chemical detergents. When cleaning door glass, avoid products with abrasive fillers, which can leave micro-scratches on the glass surface.

Hinges, movement mechanisms (roller axles, wheels) must be lubricated regularly. In the absence of recommendations for lubrication from the manufacturer of the mechanisms, the moving parts are lubricated with ordinary machine oil or WD-40 liquid.

Glass structures fit well into modern exteriors and interiors of public buildings, entertainment complexes, restaurants, shopping centers, offices, banks, country houses. The author's design of decor, glass coloring, drawings or photographic printing should be combined with a single style of the facade or interior.

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