A recent Hettich market research study explored the consumer’s mind on their expectations for sliding doors in furniture design.

The study revealed that consumer preferences were driving the trend towards sliding doors in furniture design, with factors such as ergonomics, functionality and design scoring over side-mounted doors and flaps.

Sliding door ergonomics

Sliding doors score well on ergonomics and convenience parameters as they don’t get in the way when open, especially in space constrained locations such as bedrooms or offices. Sliding doors do not present any risk of injury when left open in kitchens and bathrooms. Sliding doors also never move out of reach when opened and are always easy to use.

Design creativity with sliding doors

Sliding doors play an important role in carrying modern interior design through into furniture because large surface doors provide the key to creating spaces with a purist look while reducing necessary gaps to a minimum.

The new InLine sliding door system for flush fitting unit fronts meets the most exacting demands on practical functionality and aesthetic appeal. The first sliding door system without handles, InLine allows doors to be opened in response to a light pull on the door's outermost edge. InLine XL for doors weighing up to 60kg and InLine S for doors weighing up to 20kg are ideal for a wide range of applications; InLine XL is recommended for wardrobes in addition to pantry units in high-end kitchens while InLine S is ideal for sideboards in living rooms and offices, kitchen wall units, or mirrored cabinets in the bathroom.

With features including infinitely variable soft-closing force, option of flush opening doors, and various adjustment options for perfect gap alignment, InLine sliding door systems offer a premium solution for furniture design.

SlideLine M from Hettich is a new single-track sliding door system that functions as a practical silent design element in living room units, shelf systems, kitchen wall cabinets and bathroom furniture. SlideLine M lets closefitting sliding door fronts weighing up to 30kg glide back and forth with effortless ease on furniture of any type. Once the furniture is in place, the system can be mounted by just one person on all top panels in standard gauges of 16, 18, 22 and 25 mm. A single profile is sufficient for running two doors in front of shelf rows fitted one above the other. The optional soft-closing Silent System is integrated out of sight.

Hettich’s SysLine S sliding door system for inset doors offers an impressive smoothly floating action and luxurious ease of movement. Particularly quiet, smooth running performance helps to cut noise levels in the office. The optional Silent System optimises it further for soft, automatic closure. As the soft-closing mechanism is fully integrated in the runner profile, no storage space is lost. With no profiles in the bottom panel, the sliding door system helps to provide a neat look and easy access to cabinet contents.

Sliding door functionality

A major finding of Hettich's market study was the importance attached by consumers to the practical aspects of cabinet doors, particularly to ease of opening and closing. The linear movement facilitated by sliding doors combined with low forces needed to open them, and the convenience of soft, gentle and silent closing action are some of the features appreciated by consumers.

TopLine sliding door systems from Hettich now come with all-new soft-closing units that perfectly match consumer expectations for sliding door units. Hettich offers the new soft-closing system for TopLine M capable of closing doors weighing up to 35kg both gently and quietly. In future, TopLine L will be available with a newly developed soft-closing unit delivering less opening force, less noise and the option of adjusting the soft-opening force to door weight and preferred closing velocity.

The soft closing system also features a more optimised design with a reduced casing size and minimised gap between profile and soft-closing unit. TopLine L will also bring the option of soft closing to all doors on three-door units. The new centre-door soft-closing element lets the centre door close quietly and gently.