Blurring the lines

Where once people liked to have a neat boundary between home and garden, now the desire is for a seamless connection between the two. In response to this demand we have witnessed an increase in doors that, while still functional, aesthetically pleasing and secure, offer this connection. Malcom Taylor, product manager at Rehau, discusses these changing dynamics.

There is no doubt that the dynamism in consumer demands has accelerated in recent years; we recognise that customers are increasingly looking for cost-effective, stylish and convenient solutions that break down the barriers between home and garden.

Rehau has been a partner of Central Windows and Conservatories for more than 20 years, so when the Invisifold Slide and Swing doors was first developed, we naturally welcomed the opportunity to use Rehau profiles that offer an alternative to the traditional multi-fold door concept.

Rehau partnered with Central Windows’ sister company, Invisifold, and VBH Hardware to offer a slide and swing large door system. Made from Total 70 profiles, the system has several key benefits that outweigh traditional multi-fold doors.

As well as boosting size and versatility, the Invisifold system tackles the perennial problem of unsightly hinges and hardware seen in traditional bifold doors. The seamless simplicity of the design provides homes with improved aesthetics and beautiful lines that open up a whole new world of possibilities.

The panels sit and move seamlessly within the frame, where all the hardware is concealed, leaving a simple handle and a profile cylinder as the only exterior elements. This streamlined approach frees up additional space next to the doors, for a more spacious and open feel.

The system features framed glass panels that open, slide, swing and stack for flexible arrangements. The system is compatible with both double and triple-glazed units, and the panels are unconnected to one another and move independently adding greater flexibility into the number of panels chosen.

The product was launched by Rehau in South Africa this year and has gained considerable momentum across Europe, and has been exhibited in Asia and South America by Rehau too.

Neil Ingram, president at Invisifold, said: “We have been involved in the door and window industry for over two decades now and have produced one of the world’s first sliding glass systems that has no moving parts. We mirrored some of the knowledge and experience we learned from this when developing the Invisifold system nearly four years ago and it has worked brilliantly.

“The quality of the Rehau products is second to none and the already existing technological framework was an ideal match to slot in the Invisifold technology. With the right training these doors are substantially faster to manufacturer and install, and Rehau fabricators and installers can benefit from this significantly. In fact, lower fabrication and installation costs give them a competitive edge and will definitely improve their overall business profitability.”

Central Windows recently installed the Invisifold door system into Rehau’s London specification manager’s home as he was so impressed with the high-quality and overall appeal of the product. Key considerations were the need for better quality, easy to fit, chic and stylish products that provided full access to the outside area, allowing the garden to become a beautiful extension to the property.

The flexibility of the door system means the family can now vary the degree of aperture according to need; for example, opening just the main panel for access in and out, or partially sliding the sashes across to form ventilating air slits. For hot days or large social functions, the option of folding all the panels away to one side opens the room up completely to the outdoors.

The Invisifold door system has also passed PAS 24 Document Q approval when Rehau profiles and VBH hardware are used, providing customers with the ultimate peace of mind regarding the security of their homes.

This new system provides a harmonious blend between your indoor and outdoor living spaces and with it, the possibilities are endless.