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Greenhouse guide: Would you prefer a double door or a sliding door?

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There are greenhouses with sliding doors and there are doors with double doors. We have compared the advantages and disadvantages of both variants for you.

© Marina Lohrbach - Fotolia.com

For many plant lovers, a greenhouse in the garden is the non-plus-ultra when it comes to their own hobby. This enables a constant climate in every season, which means that crops and exotic specimens can be planted and fruits or vegetables harvested at any time. When purchasing a greenhouse, however, many questions arise regarding your own preferences, because there are a particularly large selection of different variants between pavilion greenhouses, cold frames, greenhouses with skylights and lean-to greenhouses. It can be difficult just to select the greenhouse doors. Because it is not always immediately clear whether sliding or double doors are the better choice. But what are the differences and what exactly are the advantages of both variants?

Why is it so difficult to choose the doors for the greenhouse?

If you browse the hardware store, an online shop or other providers for a suitable greenhouse for your own garden, every company offers this in numerous variations. There is not only something for every budget, but also for every space and all imaginable preferences. A big difference between the models is the type of access that the greenhouse offers. Many versions have a sliding door or double sliding doors, others have one or two hinged doors. The problem: Both variants look similarly good and differ only in that they are advantageous in different ways. So basically it is important to choose between the different advantages.

The fact that the prices for the greenhouses with different door types do not really differ does not make the purchase decision any easier. Only if you want to change the door system later, you have to expect disadvantages such as high workload and immense costs. It is therefore particularly important to make the right decision right from the start.

Advantages and disadvantages of different doors

Both types of door for the greenhouse have their own advantages, but also one or the other disadvantage. As a result, gardeners prefer certain types of doors with regard to sliding or gullwing doors based on their own experience or visual and other requirements, and other users do not care which door closes the greenhouse. But now to the advantages and disadvantages of the greenhouse doors:

Advantages and disadvantages of sliding doors

✔ no space necessary to open the door inwards or outwards
✔ The door lies close to the greenhouse after opening and can therefore not be closed by the wind or quickly damaged by other influences
✔ more stable in bad weather
✔ Perceived by many users as more elegant in handling and appearance
✔ Delivers a lot of space as a double door

✘ the door is difficult to close and operate if the frame is not properly installed or damaged
✘ Sliding ability may deteriorate over time
✘ not quite as sealing
✘ fairly maintenance-intensive and a little more difficult to replace
✘ Frames for double sliding doors can look ugly on the greenhouseAdvantages and disadvantages of double doors

✔ The door closes properly even after years
✔ Maintenance of the door is much easier
✔ The door is usually easier to replace when there is a need
✔ easy to use
✔ With appropriate seals, it can ensure that the greenhouse is sealed and protected against external temperatures in all weathers
✔ Delivers a lot of space as a double door
✔ can also come with a door threshold for accessibility

✘ need space to swing inwards or outwards
✘ appear conventional instead of modern and chic

Which doors you choose for the greenhouse because of the advantages and disadvantages - the main thing is that good access to the greenhouse is granted that exactly meets your own needs.

What needs to be considered when choosing the doors?

Double doors allow access with a wheelbarrow - © Unique Vision - Fotolia.com

If, despite all the advantages and disadvantages, you cannot really choose between the two door types, there are various things to consider when choosing to get a little closer to your own model.

Size of the doors

Whether you tend towards sliding doors or the good old wing doors for the greenhouse - both variants must be able to offer exactly the space you need. That means: Both variants should only be bought in the size that enables easy passage. A conventional wing or sliding door is usually less than 80cm wide and up to 2m high to allow one person to walk through. However, this does not take into account the devices that often have to be carried or pushed into the greenhouse. A wheelbarrow, for example, is about 80cm wide and requires the lowest possible threshold to be pushed into the greenhouse - and is needed more often than previously thought. So if you handle this often, you should use a double swing door or sliding door to get exactly this passage width.

By the way, when choosing the door, you also have to consider certain greenhouse furniture that you want to make. These must be able to be carried into the greenhouse or be assembled in the greenhouse so that the facility works smoothly.

" The general rule: The wider the sliding or wing doors are, the better they are in terms of air circulation. Because in the open state they allow good ventilation of the greenhouse when gardening and thus ensure that germs are less able to survive inside. Excessive humidity, which is not beneficial to some plant species, can also be better compensated for. For this reason, windows in the greenhouse are of great importance.

Do you want to lock the greenhouse?

If you want to store high-quality tools or rare plant specimens in the greenhouse, there is always the risk of theft. Therefore, when selecting the door, it is also important to make sure that you can lock it. A simple lock can prevent unauthorized persons from tampering with the greenhouse or even deliberately damaging it from the inside. The lock also often prevents the wind from opening the doors and causing damage. If the door does not close properly, for example due to the poor installation of a sliding door, animals can also be troubled inside the greenhouse.

Is accessibility needed?

Hinged doors are more suitable if access to the greenhouse has to be barrier-free. These are also available with a very low and easily accessible threshold, which is not only better suited for wheelbarrows. This factor should also be considered if the user himself often has problems with walking and stumbles easily, for example in old age.

External influences

Furthermore, it should be ensured that the doors and their frame are as robust as possible so that they can better withstand all weather conditions. For example, double glazing is much better for greenhouses than simple one that is easy to damage.

Conclusion

We cannot give a blanket answer to the question of the optimal solution. If you are planning to buy a greenhouse, then you should think carefully about the requirements you place on your greenhouse and, of course, on the door. If you want to drive into the greenhouse with a wheelbarrow, you should prefer a double wing door. These are wide enough and therefore come without an obstacle. In this way you also enable barrier-free access. To do this, they take up space outside or inside when the doors are open. Sliding doors, on the other hand, take up less space and appear more modern. However, they do not allow barrier-free access and cannot seal as well as double doors.

Before you buy the greenhouse, make sure you think about how you want to use it. Your own preferences and the available space should also be taken into consideration.

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