Glazed external doors are safe, but some are safer than others. In isolation, glass is more fragile than other materials, such as steel. However, they are not constructed from glass alone. Glazed exterior doors come in different styles and patterns, with different panes, different frames, and different locks.
Statistically, intruders are more likely to target front door opportunistically, but we should still take all the steps required to make all entry points into our home as safe as possible.
Evaluating all your options will help you fulfil your priorities in security, energy efficiency, costs, and aesthetics. An effective compromise creates an affordable, presentable, and secure home.
Single Versus Double Versus Triple Glazing
If you’re concerned about the safety of your door glazing, it’s well worth checking the type of glass in the panes. Fully glass doors come with double glazing as a minimum, but some older doors may have single glazed panels.
Single glazed panels are far more vulnerable than double or triple glazed. Each layer of glass is an extra layer of protection. Intruders can even prize single-glazed panes from the frames to gain entry to the building. Upgrading to double or triple glazing prevents this weakness while earning its keep with greater energy efficiency.
Protect Your Glazed External Doors With Security Glass
To ensure your glazing is safe and secure, check if the glass has any safety treatment or reinforcement. Tempered or toughened glass is far more robust and less prone to chips than standard glass. Even when it does smash, it is more likely to remain in the frame and shatters into non-cutting pieces.
Laminated glass provides an extra layer of glazing fortitude and premium house security. Each pane features a compound makeup of two layers of glass sandwiching a clear layer of plastic. Developed by car manufacturers to protect drivers from high-speed crashes, this feature makes window panes resilient and highly shatter-proof. In homes, as well as cars, it also reduces noise pollution, making your property safe, sound, and peaceful.
Privacy: Tints and Filters for Your Glazed External Doors
Glazing safety doesn’t have to involve reinforcements or iron bars. You can make your door safer with non-invasive intruder-deterring measures. As previously mentioned, many break-ins occur due to spur of the moment opportunity crimes. To lower the chances of such crimes, reduce the temptation and improve your glazing’s privacy.
This could include frosting or tinting your glazed panels, or even coating them in a reflective one-way wrap. Frosting creates interesting patterns while obscuring your possessions from would-be intruders. The same can be said of one-way coatings, which allow you to see through the window during the day but keep outsiders in the dark.
Safer Doors by Design
Whether you’re talking full-glass patio doors or bifolds, certain door designs stand out as the safest and most secure modern models.
Whichever style you go for, look out for Secure by Design accreditation. This initiative, a project between engineers and the police since 1989, ensures door designs are secure enough for purpose. It makes sure glazing, frames, and locks alike maintain high standards and keep homes as safe as possible.
SBD is well worth looking up and looking out for to ensure safety in any modern door.
The three most popular glass external doors on the market are French windows, sliding doors and bifold doors. Unlike bifold doors, the first two feature large panes of glass, meaning the centre of each pane is further from the frame. By contrast, bifold doors offer smaller panels encased by hinged frame segments. This feature, which allows them to efficiently concertina open when in use, adds support to each panel, presents would-be intruders with smaller windows of opportunity.
Solid Core Composite Doors
While solid metal doors are highly durable, solid core composite doors offer a more aesthetically versatile alternative. Their composite makeup of a reinforced core wrapped in strong, weatherproof layer creates a composite of security and style. This creates a natural-looking door with security at its core. The multiple layers enshrine energy-efficiency and safety in your home, right from the threshold.
Security in External Panel Design
Intruder-deterring panel designs uphold security whilst offering all the benefits of natural light. Some door designs feature panes above the eye-line. This allows light to filter from above but keeps unwanted eyes out of your home.
In some ways, installing extra side panels in different angles might make your home safer, even with more glass. Extra panels mean more lines of sight towards the locks and the doorway, making it difficult for a burglar to stage a break-in in secret.
Either way, prioritising security at the door design stage is the first step towards safety and peace of mind.