Dorsia makes buying steel-look doors and windows easy with his helpful guide. Check out our entire range of steel-inspired glazing for the home. Whether you’re looking at replacing your dated doors or windows or need these sought-after products for a new extension, here’s all you need to know.
Advice when buying steel-look doors and windows
Art-Deco, Scandi, Hygge, Contemporary, Industrial or steel-replacement. Just some of the terms you’ll come across when researching these trendy windows and doors, also available as bifolding and sliding doors. Even better, they’re available for inside the home too.
It’s the original Art-Deco and well-known Crittall® steel windows, these products take inspiration from. Nothing, of course, beats the look of the genuine steel product. It’s the slimmest, the strongest but also the most expensive. Aluminium now provides a credible alternative, to the original product. Moreover, with so many of these products on the market, we tell you what to look out for so you get the look and feel you want. .
First of all, it’s worth remembering when buying steel-look windows that these are not replica or like-for-like products to the original. They come close, but there is some compromise.
Sightlines and Corner joints
Sightlines are the first thing that differs. The original steel product has welded corners, aluminium has mechanically joined. It’s the same for any opening sashes, mullions and transoms. Again these are welded on steel, mechanical on aluminium. In aluminium, they’re also slightly thicker.
Glazing bars on windows and doors
Of course, it’s the glazing bars on these products giving the multi-pane effect and desirable industrial style.
In aluminium these are hand-applied to the door or window. The steel product again has this welded. A well made product in aluminium looks just as good. The joints are neat and there’s no risk of these coming off the glass.
However, it’s worth telling your window cleaner not to be too harsh on any window fitted with applied bars.
Depending on the product, these come in 19mm, 25mm or 40mm sightlines. Again, check out the different products. A quality product has consistent sightlines across the bars as well as the door/window frames.
What to look out for buying steel-look doors and windows
One of the reasons you want this particular look is the signature features of the original steel or Art-Deco inspired product. Here are some of the most popular and what you should look out for.
- The on-trend matt black colour.
- Glass pane consistency thanks to perfectly aligned horizontal and vertical glazing bars.
- Windows with fixed panels or doors with sidelights, all lining through neatly.
- Slimline windows with features such as stepped frames, giving authentic styling.
- The option for modern or classically styled handles. For windows and doors make sure you get a choice.
Doors vs Windows in the steel-look
Crucially, be aware which products come specifically designed in the steel look and which ones are customised products.
For design and technical reasons, some products are standard doors and all they have is applied bars. Some do look just fine, others less so. Here’s what to know about windows vs doors in this popular Scandi styling.
Heritage and Art-Deco Windows
For windows, single or double French doors and fixed panes these come as dedicated steel-look products.
This is perhaps the easiest to understand in terms of product choice. We’ve got a complete choice for outside as well as inside the property.
The Alitherm system is by far the best looking and most popular in the UK. This is our top choice for art-deco windows. Slim and with a choice of designs, it’s the one giving the best look and finish.
Window hardware is essential in getting the right look too. Check for options. You should find period hardware even down to the old peg-stays of steel windows. Finally, check what colours you get. A good product gives you handles in these industrial finishes such as pewter, antique black, pewter, and other shades.
Slimline sliding doors in the steel-look
Sliding doors are different. There’s no specific steel look sliding door product in aluminium. Many of the images you see online are computer generated images.
One of the first give-aways is the door track. If you see images of a sliding door without any track or threshold, leaving a bare floor, then it’s not possible in aluminium. These come only in steel.
Our solution is our super-slim slider by Cortizo. It’s a regular slimline sliding door with expertly applied aluminium bars giving the slimline steel look. And because these doors come as standard with a 20mm mullion, the look is even better.
Folding sliding doors
Most bifolding doors on the market with this styling, again are standard bifolding doors with applied bars.
The look with most slimline products is pretty good and gives a pleasing end result. Our advice is go with bifolding doors having the thinnest door mullions. Origin’s slimline bifold is a great solution here in the OB-49 model. Schuco folding sliding doors work just as well too.
The most authentic steel-look bifolding door in aluminium is the Smart Systems product. The 6000 model, bought correctly comes with a heritage sash just like the popular French door style.
By far the best things about our heritage bifold is its got the thinnest mullion sightlines on the market at just 94mm.
Scandi and steel-styled single and double doors
Arguably the most popular styles for patio doors is the classic French doors with sidelights design.
These come with the right look and feel. Thicker plate behind the handles, even a deep bottom rail if you want it.
Make sure your doors have consistent lines all round and especially the bars. Our’s do and remain on the best selling on the market.
And just like the windows, these should also come with a great choice of handle colours and styles.
Buying Steel-look doors and windows from Dorsia
Our entire range of steel-look glazing products gives homeowners and builders the style, functionally and performance.
Get in touch today for prices, lead times. Even better with these product, they’re easy for any competent builder to fit with ease.