Your guide to buying steel look aluminium doors.

There’s no doubt the heritage, industrial and Art-Deco styling is incredibly popular and steel look aluminium doors are one of the key products in this style.

Designed to look like classic steel doors, industrial glazing and even known as Scandi or Hygge, taking inspiration from Scandinavian designs. Here’s everything you need to know about buying steel look aluminium doors.

Steel look aluminium doors explained

steel look aluminium doors to a new patio area in black colour

It’s worth knowing that steel look aluminium doors are not intended as a like-for-like replacement for the genuine steel door such as Crittall®. Instead, these are designed with many of the styling cues of the genuine steel product.

Genuine steel doors are beautifully crafted, welded and with galvanised steel, slimmer and altogether different. They’re also significantly more expensive and also come as fire-rated products when used internally and to meet Building Regulations.

Steel look aluminium doors are a more affordable alternative to steel but if you choose the right product, from an expert supplier and style it right, the look is just as effective.

Understanding steel look aluminium doors products

As you do your research around these sought-after and on-trend products, you’ll come across many different types. Some products designed as steel look aluminium doors are basic doors with nothing but horizontal and/or vertical bars added, giving the multi-panel or grid-like appearance of classic metal doors. The profiles, handle choices, in fact, the whole product is exactly the same as the standard door from other suppliers.

Then you have the better-designed and engineered aluminium doors, created from the outset in the steel look. These come with profiles, handles, glazing bars and accessories more accurately reflecting the Art-Deco, industrial and look of steel glazing. These are exactly the products forming our range of doors.

Designs available with steel look doors

steel look aluminium doors with matching windows in a modern extension
Steel look aluminium doors come in numerous styles and arrangements

Focusing on hinged doors, here are just some of the designs available for your new extension or property renovation project.

  • Single or French Doors
  • Single or French doors with side panels
  • Designs featuring corners, apex or gable heads
  • Steel look doors inside as room dividers or dedicated interior doors

Five ways to spot the right steel look aluminium doors.

Here’s how the better-designed product differs from otherwise standard doors with bars.

Slimmer profiles than regular aluminium doors

Compare a good aluminium residential door product side by side with a steel look version and the first clue is slimmer door profiles all around. Steel-look doors are noticeably thinner than a standard door.

stepped profiles not flat

Another excellent clue to purpose-designed steel-look aluminium doors are profiles with a stepped edge or prominent detail on the door itself. Standard aluminium doors usually have a flat or flush profile. Genuine aluminium steel look does not.

The image below demonstrates the profile styling you get on a quality steel look door.

The thicker plate behind the door handle

steel look aluminium doors separating two rooms in a modern house
Double internal doors both with a feature lock backplate

Perhaps the most distinctive feature and one found in the genuine steel door is the thicker lock backplate. This is a long rectangular design detail sitting behind the handles, that you can’t replicate on a standard door.

The thicker lock backplate is perhaps your best indicator with stepped profiles that you’re looking at a well-designed steel look aluminium doors product.

Consistent sightlines all round with steel look aluminium doors

steel-look patio door screen with gable design at the back of a large house
A larger combination screen with consistent sightlines throughout

With so many steel look doors intended for the patio area and many having side panels, neat and consistent lines is another great clue to a well-designed and thought out steel look door using aluminium.

Glazing bars should run through neatly, where the door may have transoms instead of bars, both should be the same dimension. Where the door joins the side panel should also be slim. All of these are designed into good steel-look products and usually don’t form part of regular aluminium doors.

The right steel-inspired door handles and furniture

Many standard aluminium doors trying to look like a steel-inspired product have to use the same handles. A properly designed steel-look door has handle designs and metal finishes similar to the original product.

Look out for a choice of handle designs reflecting the original designs. Look for handle finishes in pewter, brass, black matt, brushed metal and other similar shades. A good choice of hardware combined with slim and discreet hinges is another clue that you’re looking at the right product to give you the steel look.

Design and engineering with steel look aluminium doors

Whilst the entire look of steel-inspired doors goes back to older designs, all products come with 21st Century design, security and energy efficiency.

First of all, are excellent architectural-grade aluminium profiles and all of these have a built-in thermal break or insulation helping with good door energy ratings. These profiles are then coated in a durable powder-coated finish in a choice of colours, although black is probably the most popular in this style.

Then for security, you’ll find the latest locking systems with multiple points of engagement, robust handles and high security key cylinders.

Weather protection is also taken care of thanks to great product design and a combination of seals, brushes and gaskets.

Finally is the choice of energy-efficient safety glass. All our products come with high quality glass. As standard you’ll get toughened safety glass, having a soft-coat low-emissivity coating, warm edge spacer bars and argon gas fill. 

The finest steel look aluminium doors from Aspire Bifolds

Check out the Portfolio area of our website where you can see numerous installations using our range of steel look aluminium doors.

Expertly crafted products with true attention to detail, made by the best manufacturers and professionally installed by us. You can view our range in our Epsom showroom. Get a free quote today.

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What our customers say:

Excellent product and service. We had crittal style bifold doors supplied and fitted by Aspire Bifolds just before Christmas and would thoroughly recommend them. The doors look excellent and the guys installing them were professional and very efficient. We were very pleasantly surprised that in the current situation the doors were still provided and installed within the timeframe originally quoted. Thank you.
Lucy R.
Lucy R.
12:12 03 Jan 22
excellent dealings from start to finish, knowledgeable sales team and superb fitters
Roy H.
Roy H.
08:22 02 Aug 21
From the first phone call, a visit to the showroom, through to the site survey and installation, the Aspire team have been unfailingly both very professional, problem solving and friendly. They delivered a great product and service, at a good price, on time, with flexibility, diligence and a smile, and that in our experience is almost unheard of these days.We will definitely turn to Aspire again when we next need windows etc, and can't recommend them enough.
Chris Y.
Chris Y.
09:06 13 Jul 21
Brilliant Service from start to finish. From the time we got in touch for initial quotation for our bi-folds doors until delivery of the products and installation this company was a pleasure to work with and highly recommend this company. The entire team we dealt with including James, Danny and his installation team, Peter, Frankie have been very friendly, courteous and professional. Always punctual and did their best to meet all our requirements. Excellent workmanship and quality products. Good competitive prices too. Very pleased with everything and Thanks very much Aspire Bifolds for a job well done.
Buddhika B.
Buddhika B.
10:05 18 May 21
Super impressed with the level of service and how quickly they got the job done. Really happy with our new bifolds fitted just in time for spring!Would definitely recommend
Greg P.
Greg P.
09:50 05 May 21
Aspire did the most beautiful job in our house. The installed our windows a few months ago, and I couldn't be happier.They were always happy to answer to our question.They came at 8 o'clock and installed the windows very swiftly with a very clean and tidy result. They decorated afterwards around the windows and you couldn't tell those weren't the original windows as the result was so good.We have a toddler in of the rooms they were installing the windows and they accommodated their work around his naps which was brilliant.If you are looking for anything window or door related look no further, I will definitely recommend and if needed use them again.
GEMMA M.
GEMMA M.
10:20 28 Apr 21
Aspire supplied the most beautiful 7m sliding doors for my extension. The doors are great quality and all the fitting and snagging very professionally handled. Would not hesitate to use this company. Thank you.
Jo J.
Jo J.
15:33 16 Mar 21
I would recommend Aspire Bifolds. We love our bifolds and the service we received was great.
Karen A.
Karen A.
07:40 16 Mar 21
The team were so brilliant, helpful and lovely to deal with to supply and fit of our new steel look heritage doors. We are delighted with them and heartily recommend using Aspire! A great experience all round.
Andy P.
Andy P.
11:15 05 Feb 21
Best Bifold supplier in Surrey
Martin J.
Martin J.
19:06 06 Jan 21
Great Service from Aspire, with comprehensive knowledge on bifold systems and went with the ORIGIN product. Hassle free communication throughout contract and install just before Christ.as 2020.
Simon C.
Simon C.
16:01 04 Jan 21
We were recomended to Aspire by our carpenter who was building a garden room for us, and we were not dissapointed.From the initial meeting to the completion of the work the company , and especially John Small, and the lads that came to install the doors on one of the wettest days of the year, have been excellent.The Bifolds are amazing. They look so good, and when they open and close they sound solid and beautifully made.Superb job. Thank you.
Simon B.
Simon B.
08:12 25 Nov 20
I don't usually write reviews but Aspire have been an absolute pleasure to deal with from start to finish. After replacing my neighbours sliding doors they came highly recommended. The lady on the phone was extremely helpful and understood my requirements, and my quotation was turned around quickly. I had some technical questions regarding the threshold; and unlike other companies I dealt with, I was not treated as a nuisance and Ji (I hope I spelt this correctly!) talked me through everything. The surveyor arrived within a day of me signing and despite the current situation with many delays, they still installed within the quoted lead time!The Schuco bifolds we now have look amazing and we are so thrilled we went with Aspire Bifolds!Thanks alot Ji and Team.Cliff
Cliff Bentley T.
Cliff Bentley T.
14:33 04 Nov 20
From the very beginning of discussing what products I’d like, through to survey and fitting, Aspire have been fabulous. Very happy with both the products themselves and the service throughout, would thoroughly recommend!
Thank you so much!
Cat P.
Cat P.
10:56 23 Sep 20
Aspire were great to work with and we are delighted with the finished product. We got bifolds, skylight, large side windows and french doors all for a highly competitive price. We had some unavoidable delays due to the pandemic but we were always kept in the loop with what was going on with our order. we are extremely pleased with the quality and value we got through working with them.
Frankie H.
Frankie H.
12:32 11 Sep 20
Very professional. Do a great job.
Rupert P.
Rupert P.
08:23 11 Sep 20
I would absolutely recommend Aspire Bifolds. They provided a great product at a reasonable price. Installation team was friendly and professional. They installed in less than a day.We also encountered a small issue with the measurement of the doors, but the leadership at Aspire was quick to cover additional costs incurred to rectify the issue. We really appreciated their professionalism on this matter.
Tim S.
Tim S.
06:54 10 Sep 20
Huge thank you to Aspire Bifolds for our external steel look doors, we’re so happy with them and the guys were quick, responsive and all around brilliant. Would really recommend Aspire Bifolds.
Libby R.
Libby R.
07:42 06 Sep 20
Very efficient and helpful service 2 years on from original door fitting.Thanks so much Aspire!
Kim L.
Kim L.
11:00 27 Jul 20
Aspire bifolds removed some old wooden sliding doors and replaced them with some lovely French doors. They did a fantastic job- they spent time with me to ensure I had made the right choice of door, it took no time to fit them and the fitter was friendly, polite, clean and courteous. Quote was competitive and I couldn’t recommend them enough!
Natasha H.
Natasha H.
19:59 23 Jul 20
We went with Aspire after getting a few quotes, they weren't the cheapest but were still competitive. We chose them on the basis of their reviews and I am really glad we did! The service has been excellent throughout, our doors were installed far quicker than we were expecting, the fitter's attention to detail is great, and the quality of the doors is fantastic.After installation we did have a few problems with finding marks on the glass, which is provided by another firm, and had a few panes replaced. John, the director, ended up coming round himself and offered to replace the final pane. I know that many firms would just have ignored our calls once we had paid everything, so to have this level of service was fantastic. This proved our decision to go with a slightly more expensive firm in Aspire was the right move!
Scott S
Scott S
12:10 16 Jul 20
After a lot of research I came across Aspire Bifolds, went to the showroom and they have a very good selection of doors to choose from.From start to finish it's been a pleasure to deal with everyone connected to Aspire Bifolds and their aftercare service is first class.Top quality product, installation and all round experience from this company. Would have no hesitation in using them again.
Paresh M.
Paresh M.
12:32 14 Apr 20
Professional first class service from start to finish. Highly recommend on service and price
Catherine Kenton M.
Catherine Kenton M.
18:59 08 Apr 20
We recently used Aspire for purchase and installation of smart system heritage doors for our extension. We are thrilled with the finished product. John and the team are brilliant, every person I spoke to was helpful and friendly. Email response was really fast. The whole process from start to finish was seamless and stress free.The installers were efficient and tidy, they left the place cleaner than when they arrived. Following installation we noticed a scratch on one of the panes, we thought it could be buffed out, but the whole pane was replaced without issue within a week.It is rare to find a company with such great customer service and work ethic these days. I would certainly be happy recommending Aspire to anyone.
Rebecca D.
Rebecca D.
11:39 27 Feb 20
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