Things to Consider When Choosing Between Sliding Doors and Garden Doors

sliding doors

Summer is almost here and you might be looking to make the outdoors more accessible by replacing your backdoor with something bigger and more appealing. If you have the room for it, sliding patio doors or garden doors can make a great addition to any room and can also enhance the look of your backyard.

A number of people opt for garden or sliding doors because of the amount of natural light they let in compared to a traditional door. They are also simply just much more visually appealing, especially when it comes to garden doors that come in a variety of styles and have a more classic feel.

But sliding patio doors tend to be more convenient, so it can be difficult to decide between the two. Here are some things to consider when weighing the options between swinging garden doors vs sliding patio doors and deciding which is best for your home.

Swinging Garden Doors

Garden doors or French doors are made up of two doors that swing outward and inward on hinges. They are the most traditional choice when it comes to installing doors leading out into your garden and is generally considered more secure.


  • A classic look that can act as the focal point of your room
  • Comes in a variety of styles and finishes
  • More secure because of its multi-point locking system
  • Sills are less likely to be tripped over than tracks
  • Rust and corrosion resistant


  • Swinging open and closed means that space is required around them
  • Doesn’t let as much light in as sliding doors
  • May require add-on features
  • Most likely will cost more than sliding patio doors

Sliding Patio Doors

Sliding doors move along tracks fitted into the frames at the top and bottom of the doors. Unlike garden doors, sliding doors are typically just large panes of glass, acting like large windows instead of doors. Because of this, they let a lot of light into your home and are often a preferred choice because of their affordability and convenience.


  • Take up less space both inside and outside your home as they don’t swing outward or inward
  • Offer a contemporary, more modern look to a home
  • More affordable
  • Easy to operate and convenient for getting in and out of your home – especially when hosting parties in your backyard
  • Let more light in and offer a generous view of your backyard
  • Generally low maintenance


  • The sliding track can potentially cause a tripping hazard
  • Less versatile in appearance and not as classy looking as garden doors – not ideal for older homes where they can look out of place

Form vs Function

When it comes down to it you’ll probably pick a garden door if you’re looking for an option that’s stylish and dramatic. If you don’t mind spending more, they are great for adding visual appeal both inside and outside your home.

On the other hand, if you’re mostly concerned about function – ease of access to the outdoors, letting more sunlight in, low-maintenance and affordability – then sliding doors are probably right for you.


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