Patio Door Blinds and Shutters Buying Guide

Abi Clewley

BY Abi Clewley

Published: 12 December 2023 Updated: 25 March 2024

Patio doors are a gateway to the outdoors, inviting in natural light and connecting your indoor and outdoor living spaces. To maximize the functionality, aesthetics, and privacy of your patio doors, it's essential to choose the right window coverings. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the considerations to make for patio doors, the differences between French doors and patio doors, and the benefits of using blinds and shutters. Whether you're looking for the best solution to enhance privacy, facilitate easy operation, control temperatures, or handle heavy foot traffic, this guide has got you covered.

Considerations to make for Patio Doors:

Before diving into the specifics of blinds and shutters, let's first consider the key factors to keep in mind when choosing window coverings for patio doors:

Size and type of Patio Doors
The size, style, and type of your patio doors will influence your choice of window coverings. Sliding glass doors, as they're also know as, have unique requirements themselves, with additional requirements depending on the setting and surrounding areas.
Light control
Determine how much natural light you want to allow into your space. Some patio doors need to maintain a view even when closed, while others require higher levels of light control.
Privacy
Consider your level of desired privacy, both during the day and at night. Your choice of window coverings should offer the right balance between visibility and seclusion.
Traffic and usage
Evaluate the frequency of use of your patio doors. Heavy foot traffic doors may require more durable and easily operable window treatments.
Interior décor
Ensure that your choice of blinds or shutters complements your interior décor and enhances the overall aesthetics of your home.

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The difference between French Doors and Patio Doors:

The terms French doors and patio doors are often used interchangeably, but they have distinct differences:

French Doors:

  • Design: French doors consist of two doors that swing open, typically towards the interior or exterior of a space. They have a classic and elegant appearance with multiple glass panes.


Patio Doors:

  • Design: Patio doors are sliding doors. They often feature larger glass surfaces, offering unobstructed views of the outdoors.
  • Operation: Most patio doors slide to open, making them space-efficient and ideal for smaller areas.

While both types of doors have their unique attributes, they share the need for appropriate window coverings that offer functionality and aesthetics.

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Why choose blinds for Patio Doors:

Blinds are a versatile choice for patio doors, offering a range of benefits:

Privacy: Blinds can be adjusted to provide varying levels of privacy, from fully closed for complete seclusion to partially open for filtered light and views, dependant on the style of blind used.
Light control: Blinds allow precise control over the amount of natural light entering your space, while some blinds can protect your furniture and flooring from harmful UV rays.
Easy operation: Various blind types, such as vertical blinds, are designed for easy operation with sliding patio doors. They can be effortlessly pushed aside when you want an unobstructed view.
Temperature control: Depending on the material, blinds can provide insulation, helping to regulate temperatures and improve the energy efficiency of the room.
Aesthetics: Blinds can come in a wide range of colours and materials, making it easy to find options that match your interior décor.

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The best blinds for Patio Doors

Let's explore the range of blinds and discuss which ones make the best patio door blinds and why.

Duette® blinds: temperature control

Duette® blinds take their design inspiration from nature and feature a honeycomb cell, rather than a flat design. Cellular or honeycomb blinds provide excellent insulation, helping maintain a comfortable indoor temperature. Their unique structure traps air, creating a barrier against heat or cold.

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Pleated blinds: best for social spaces

Pleated blinds are ideal for those many homes where patio doors are found in the busiest spaces, especially kitchens or extended kitchen-dining or living. These areas demand a hard-working blind that’s pleasant to look at but needs to be practical too. Many pleated blinds have specialist coatings that can protect them too, plus coatings to help reflect the suns' rays and reduce UV damage.

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Roller blinds: ease of operation

Roller blinds are designed specifically for easy operation and they work really well with sliding patio doors. They effortlessly roll up above the door frame, making them a user-friendly choice.

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Roman blinds: living spaces

If your patio door is situated with your living room then you may want something with a softer, more relaxed look and a Roman blind is a great solution here. In these spaces, your blinds need to function as night blinds as well as day so there's greater considerations to make.

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Electric blinds: large expanses of glass

If you have large patio doors or one that sits within a series of large windows then you may want to consider electric blinds. Operated by remote control, you can open or close each blind individually or collectively, quickly and easily. Smart electric blinds work via a smart hub and can be operated by an app or even voice command through Alexa or Google devices for even easier use.

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Faux wood blinds: small door solutions

It may be tempting to consider wood venetian blinds or faux wood venetian blinds, as they offer a great blend of light and privacy control but due to the length of the door drop the weight of the blind makes it almost impossible to raise and lower the stack of vanes easily. However if your door is very narrow and with a reduced head height it may be a viable option.

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Why choose shutters for Patio Doors:

Shutters offer several advantages, as well as adding a touch of elegance and sophistication to your patio doors:

Privacy: Shutters provide exceptional privacy control. You can adjust the louvers to allow light while maintaining a level of seclusion.
Durability: Shutters are built to last and can withstand daily use, making them a practical choice for frequently accessed patio doors.
Aesthetics: Plantation shutters have a timeless design that enhances the visual appeal of your space and complements various interior styles.
Light control: You can adjust the angle of the louvers to direct light where you want it, whether it's for brightness or shading.
Insulation: Shutters, especially wooden ones, offer insulation properties, helping regulate indoor temperatures and give gains on energy efficiency.

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The best shutters for Patio Doors

Now, let's explore the best shutters for specific considerations related to patio doors.

Privacy: Plantation Shutters

Plantation shutters have wide louvres that allow precise control over privacy. You can close them entirely for complete seclusion.

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Ease of operation: Tracked shutters

Tracked shutters, sometimes called sliding shutters are designed for easy operation with sliding patio doors. They move smoothly on a track, offering unobstructed access. Dependent on which material you choose, they can either fold and remain at an angle, or fold back completely against the wall.

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Heavy foot traffic: Vinyl shutters

Vinyl shutters are durable and resistant to moisture, making them a practical choice for patio doors that experience heavy use, say those leading out into a garden from a kitchen. They have a wipe clean finish to keep them looking pristine.

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Temperature control: Wooden shutters

Wooden shutters provide excellent insulation, helping maintain a comfortable temperature in your home.

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Conclusion

Choosing the right blinds or shutters for your patio doors can significantly enhance both the functionality and aesthetics of your living space and it's not always the most straightforward decision that can be easily made. By considering factors such as privacy, ease of operation, heavy foot traffic, and temperature control, you can make an informed decision to ensure that your patio doors not only look great but also meet your specific needs. Whether you opt for blinds or bespoke patio door shutters, you're making an investment that will elevate the comfort and beauty of your home.

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