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Published on March 5, 2024 7:57 AM
At Colin’s Sash Windows we don’t sell blinds but as so many of our customers buy our patio doors I thought it would be useful to give some independent advice on choice of blinds.

Blinds for patio doors are an essential consideration for those seeking both style and function in their home décor. As an extension of our living spaces, patio doors offer a seamless transition between indoors and outdoor areas, but they also require a level of privacy and light control which can be effectively managed with the right blinds.

In my experience, the choice of blinds can drastically enhance the aesthetic appeal of a room while providing practical solutions for privacy and light management.

Choosing the right blinds for your patio doors involves understanding the myriad of options available and how they can cater to different needs and preferences. Vertical blinds are one of the popular choices, offering easy adjustment for light and privacy, while pleated or roller blinds present a sleek, minimalist look.

Blinds for patio doors
The type of patio door, whether sliding or French-style, will also influence the blind selection, ensuring ease of use and integration with the door’s operation. As an individual invested in creating harmonious and functional living spaces, I find it rewarding to select blinds that not only complement the room’s decor but also improve its usability.

If budget is not a problem the absolute best option for blinds for patio doors are integrated blinds that fit between the panes of glass. If you’ve already got your doors you will need to order new sealed units with the blinds pre fitted. They’re expensive though, around £350 per single door. Click here for detail and videos. You can also read my information on them here.

Key Takeaways

• Blinds must provide an ideal balance of privacy, light control, and style for patio doors.
• The selection of blinds should consider door type, usage, and personal decor style.
• Proper installation and maintenance of patio door blinds can enhance their longevity and performance.

Understanding Blinds for Patio Doors

When exploring blinds for patio doors, it’s essential to consider the material and functionality, various types and styles, and how they can influence light and privacy within your home.

Material and Functionality

Selecting the right material for patio door blinds is crucial for ensuring durability, ease of maintenance, and function. For regular usage, aluminium Venetian blinds or faux-wood blinds can offer a contemporary look while being practical. They are resistant to warping in high moisture areas and can be easily adjusted for light control. Real wood blinds imbue a natural warmth but may not be suited for spaces with high moisture or direct sunlight.
• Durability: Aluminium or faux-wood for high-traffic doors.
• Maintenance: Easy-to-clean materials like aluminium or PVC.
• Functionality: Consider blinds like verticals or rollers for frequent use.

Blind Types and Styles

Patio doors can be accentuated with a variety of blind types that cater to different aesthetics and functional needs. Vertical blinds and panel blinds are great for larger doors, offering smooth operation and ample coverage. For a sleek, integrated look, perfect fit blinds can be mounted directly onto the door frame. Venetian blinds, roller blinds, or pleated blinds provide a classic or minimalist style, allowing adjustable light control. For advanced convenience, electric blinds with remote control are an option.
• Roller blinds: Minimalist and functional for light control.
• Venetian blinds: Adjustable slats for precise light and privacy settings.
• Perfect fit blinds: No drilling required, and fits snugly into the door frame.

Light and Privacy Considerations

Light control and privacy are pivotal when choosing blinds for patio doors, as they can greatly impact the ambiance and comfort within a room. Sheers and day and night blinds allow natural light to filter through while offering privacy. Blackout blinds are beneficial for bedrooms, ensuring complete darkness when required. It’s important to choose blinds that can be easily adjusted to either let in sunshine or provide seclusion.
• Privacy: Opt for adjustable blinds or thicker fabrics for increased seclusion.
• Light control: Blinds with adjustable slats or layers offer better control.
• Blackout option: For rooms needing darkness, consider blackout or thicker materials.

Choosing the Right Blinds

When it comes to selecting blinds for patio doors, key considerations include colour, practicality, and energy efficiency. I’ll guide you through each aspect to ensure you make an informed choice that complements your home’s aesthetic and meets your functional needs.

Colour and Design

My advice for choosing the right colour and design is to ensure it reflects both your personal style and the room’s decor. Whether you’re drawn to bold hues or prefer neutral tones, selecting the right colour can enhance your room’s appearance. As for design, Illusion blinds or vertical blinds are stylish options that offer easy access, while providing control over light and maintaining privacy.
• Illusion Blinds: Elegant with flowing louvres; easy to part and close.
• Vertical Blinds: Ideal for control over light; offers privacy with smart vertical styling.

Measurement and Installation

Accuracy in measuring is crucial for made-to-measure blinds. I recommend using a reliable tape measure to attain precise dimensions. When installing, ensure you have the correct tools and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. Here’s a basic list of what you’ll need:
• Tape measure
• Drill and appropriate bits
• Screwdriver
• Level
Considering professional installation can be a wise decision for perfect fit and function, especially for something as significant as patio door blinds.

Energy Efficiency and Insulation

To reduce heat loss and potentially lower energy bills, opt for blinds with thermal properties. Blackout blinds can provide top-notch privacy and also help with insulation. Effective thermal blinds not only retain heat during colder months but also keep your space cooler in the summer—striking a balance between energy efficiency and comfort.
• Blackout Blinds: Best for darkness and privacy; good thermal qualities.
• Thermal Blinds: Designed to minimise heat loss; can aid in reducing energy costs.

Blinds for Different Patio Door Types

Selecting the ideal blinds for my patio doors is significant, as they not only provide privacy and light control but also enhance the look of the room. The choice of blinds largely depends on the type of patio door installed.

Sliding Patio Doors

For sliding patio doors, vertical blinds are a practical choice. They fit well with the linear movement of sliding doors, allowing easy access while offering essential light control and privacy. Illusion blinds are another great option; their flowing louvres part smoothly, offering a sophisticated look to my sliding doors.

French Doors

For French doors, I often recommend Integral blinds that fit neatly between glass panes or sleek roller blinds for a minimalistic appearance. They’re unobtrusive and won’t interfere with the operation of my French doors. If I’m looking for added elegance, perfect fit blinds, which attach directly to the door, ensure I don’t have to drill into the frame and maintain the doors’ aesthetic.

Bifold Doors

When it comes to bifold doors, I prefer blinds that neatly stack alongside each panel when open and provide coverage when closed. Pleated blinds are an excellent fit for bifold doors due to their neat and controlled appearance. They offer an uncluttered look and can easily be drawn back to enjoy the full view outdoors.

Installation and Operating Systems

When I fit blinds for patio doors, my focus is on ensuring the operating systems are user-friendly and the installation process is straightforward. Let’s explore the considerations for manual versus automated blinds, as well as child safety and accessibility features.

Manual vs Automated Blinds

I typically find that manual blinds are more cost-effective and can be easily installed. They often require no more than a smooth pull of the cord or twist of a wand to operate. For automated blinds, the installation process can be more complex as it usually involves an electrical setup. However, many of my customers appreciate the convenience that remote controls and wall switches provide, especially for hard-to-reach patio doors. Electric blinds offer a seamless operation and can even be integrated into smart home systems.
• Manual Blinds: Simpler installation; operated by cords or wands.
• Automated Blinds: Require power source; often controlled by remotes or switches.

Child Safety and Accessibility

Child safety is paramount in my installations. I ensure that all blinds meet UK standards, with cordless or motorised options that remove the risk of entanglement. UPVC doors are a common fixture, and the blinds installed alongside them must have secure, non-invasive fittings to maintain door integrity.
• Child Safety: Cordless designs or safe cord systems to prevent hazards.
• Accessibility: Easy operation, like low-resistance tracks for manual blinds or single-touch controls for electric blinds.

Automated blinds specifically enhance accessibility, as they can be operated with minimal physical effort, which is great for individuals with mobility issues. Whether I’m installing a simple pull-blind or a high-tech electric system, my aim is to ensure functional safety and ease of use.

Complementary Decor and Accessories

When I consider complementing decor for patio doors, it’s about striking a balance between style and functionality, considering factors like light control, privacy, and the aesthetic continuity between the patio doors and the adjoining room, be it a garden, conservatory, or living room.

Curtains and Drapes

Curtains and drapes offer an additional layer of texture and warmth to a space with patio doors. Opting for lightweight, sheer curtains can maintain a bright and airy feel, ideal for conservatories. In contrast, thicker, lined drapes work well to keep living rooms cosy and private during chilly evenings.
• Style Tip: Aim for a colour and pattern that complements the garden view while tying together the interior decor.
• Functionality: Incorporate tiebacks for versatility in controlling light and privacy.

Additional Window Treatments

Beyond curtains, other window treatments can enhance both the style and utility of patio doors. Window films or tinting can offer privacy and reduce glare without forsaking natural light. Integrating voile panels can be a stylish and lightweight choice, especially when combined with other window coverings.
• Light Control: Select materials that enable a desired level of sunlight to infuse the room, considering the direction the patio doors face in relation to the sun.
• Colour Coordination: Maintain a cohesive look by carefully choosing colours that blend with the room’s overall palette.

Maintenance and Care

When I choose blinds for my patio doors, maintenance is a key factor. For materials such as uPVC, the advantage is they are relatively low maintenance. I often recommend uPVC blinds because they can be wiped down with a damp cloth to remove any dust or spills. It’s important to avoid abrasive cleaners which can scratch the surface.

Real wood blinds require a bit more attention, but their timeless appeal is worth the effort. I dust them regularly with a soft cloth or a duster. Every so often, I treat the wood with a furniture polish to keep the slats nourished and prevent the wood from drying out or fading.

Here’s a quick maintenance guide I follow:
Cleaning:
uPVC: Mild detergent and a damp cloth work effectively.
Real Wood: Specially formulated wood cleaner maintains the finish.

Deep Cleaning:
For both uPVC and real wood, I occasionally use a vacuum with a brush attachment to gently remove any embedded dust, particularly from the corners and crevices of the blinds.

Avoid Moisture:
Real Wood: Excess moisture can warp the wood, so I make sure the slats are fully dry after cleaning.

Dust Regularly:
uPVC: I use a soft cloth or a feather duster.
Real Wood: A soft cloth is best to avoid scratches.

By taking care of my blinds correctly, I ensure they remain in pristine condition, and their functionality and aesthetic are preserved over time.

Budget and Cost Considerations

When selecting the best blinds for patio doors, I consider not only aesthetics but also the impact on energy bills. Options that offer thermal benefits have the potential to reduce heating costs, making them a worthy investment for energy-efficient homes.

Finding Value for Money

In my experience, the initial cost of patio door blinds varies widely based on material, size, and design. To find value for money, I typically recommend analysing the thermal properties of blinds. A well-insulated blind can contribute to lower energy bills, making up for a higher upfront cost over time. For instance, honeycomb blinds, while maybe pricier initially, trap air within their layers, offering superior insulation.

When assessing my budget, I allocate funds not just based on the purchase price but also consider the potential energy-saving benefits. This long-term outlook helps me choose blinds that provide both aesthetic appeal and energy efficiency, striking a balance between immediate costs and future savings.

Sizing and Custom Options

When considering blinds for my patio doors, I understand that sizing is critical. For large windows like patio doors, made-to-measure options are usually the best approach to ensure a proper fit. Here’s how I tackle sizing and customisation for my patio doors:

Measure: Getting accurate measurements is the first step to finding blinds that fit perfectly. I always measure the width and height of my door in three different places and use the narrowest width and the longest height to ensure a snug fit.

Made-to-measure: For those unique patio door sizes, made-to-measure blinds offer a tailored solution. I often opt for this service to get blinds that cater exactly to my door’s dimensions, ensuring no unwanted gaps or overhangs.

Big windows and doors: My patio doors are a substantial feature in my home. With large panes, they need blinds that can cover the expanse effectively without sagging or looking disproportionate.

Custom Options:
• Material: I choose materials that complement my space and meet my functional needs, whether it’s blocking out light with a thicker fabric or allowing sunlight to filter through with a voile.
• Colour: A broad palette is available, and I select a hue that matches my decor or makes a striking statement.
• Features: Additional features such as energy saving, waterproof, and blackout capabilities are important considerations, depending on my privacy and insulation requirements.

By keeping these points in mind, I can ensure that my patio doors are not only covered but accentuated by my choice of blinds, combining style with functionality.

Impact on Home Energy Use

When considering the role of blinds for patio doors, I’m particularly attentive to their influence on home energy efficiency. Selecting the right blinds can significantly mitigate heat loss, a common challenge with glass doors where thermal exchange is most pronounced.

My experience suggests that thermal blinds are particularly effective at reducing heat loss. In the hottest months, they work by reflecting heat away, while in cooler months, they retain warmth within the home. This isn’t merely a matter of comfort, but can also lead to tangible reductions in energy bills.

Here’s a simple breakdown of how the right blinds can enhance energy efficiency:
• Insulation: Blinds with thermal properties act as a barrier, improving the door’s insulation. By doing so, they minimise drafts that can otherwise lead to a chilling effect in the room.
• Control Light: The ability to control light ingress helps in maintaining a consistent indoor temperature, reducing the need for artificial heating or cooling.

I always advise to look for energy-efficient features when selecting blinds, as this is a straightforward approach for homeowners to bolster their energy conservation efforts. High-quality blinds, when closed, provide an additional layer that traps air and creates an insulative seal, thus serving as a practical measure for keeping energy bills in check.

In conclusion, the strategic use of appropriate patio door blinds not only elevates privacy and aesthetic appeal but fundamentally contributes to the energy economy of a home.

Outdoor Integration

In selecting blinds for my patio doors, my primary aim is to achieve a seamless flow between my interior space and the garden area. The right blinds not only provide privacy and light control but also enhance the visual connection to the outdoors.

Connecting to the Garden Area

For best results, I recommend vertical blinds, which can be drawn to one side, offering an unobstructed view of the garden. They’re a practical solution, allowing me easy access to the outside while controlling the light entry through big windows. If I prefer a more natural aesthetic, I might opt for wooden or faux-wood horizontal blinds, which can be tilted to adjust light levels without spoiling the view. My choices are informed by the need for functionality without compromising the visual and physical connection to my garden.

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, I cover some of the key queries you might have about selecting and integrating blinds for your patio doors to ensure privacy, style, and efficiency.

What are the most suitable blinds for ensuring privacy on patio doors?

For maximum privacy, I recommend vertical blinds or blackout roller blinds. These options provide complete coverage of your patio doors and can be easily adjusted for varying levels of privacy.

How can roller blinds be effectively integrated with patio doors?

Roller blinds are versatile for patio doors. I find that using made-to-measure roller blinds allows for a sleek fit, and choosing a fabric that complements your interior can integrate the blinds seamlessly with the décor.

Are there any innovative alternatives to traditional vertical blinds for patio doors?

Yes, panel track blinds are a stylish and modern alternative to traditional vertical blinds. They slide smoothly and offer a sleek look that can elevate the aesthetic of any space.

What considerations should be taken into account when installing DIY blinds for patio doors?

When I install DIY blinds, I ensure accurate measurements and consider the door’s function so the blinds do not hinder its use. Remember to check for any obstructions that might impact the installation or operation of the blinds.

Can Perfect Fit blinds be a viable solution for sliding patio doors?

Perfect Fit blinds are indeed a viable solution for sliding patio doors as they attach directly to the window frame without the need for drilling, providing a clean and integrated appearance.

What should one look for when choosing blinds from retailers like Dunelm for patio doors?

When choosing blinds from retailers such as Dunelm, I look for quality materials and the right functionality. It’s important to select a blind that offers the control I need, whether it’s for light, privacy, or insulation, and to ensure it’s the correct size for my patio doors.

Colin Greenslade
Written by Colin Greenslade
I'm the founder of Colin's Sash Windows. I disrupted the sash windows market in the UK in 2014 by introducing fixed prices for uPVC sash windows in the UK. Before this they were generally only available at very high prices through window installers. Today our business is one of the market leaders in supply only windows, doors and roofs in the UK.

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